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Putin bluffs about use of nuclear weapons - Lithuanian Foreign Ministry

Putin bluffs about use of nuclear weapons - Lithuanian Foreign Ministry Gabrielius Landsbergis, Lithuanian Foreign Minister (photo: Getty Images)

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin bluffs about the possibility of using nuclear weapons, states Gabrielius Landsbergis, Lithuanian Foreign Minister.

"He has nothing to gain from this, but everything to lose. Some countries are on his side, or so he thinks. China clearly supports Russia, global partners in Latin America and Africa are also more likely to be on Putin's side. But if the threats become reality, the whole partnership will disappear in an instant," he said.

Landsbergis made it clear that the position taken by some leading powers to avoid escalation could prove disastrous.

"This path, if you follow our strategy, leads to the destruction of the country. It can lead to a real conflict already outside Ukraine, and other countries can be involved. Because we are sending a very clear signal to Putin: if you threaten us, we will retreat," the minister said.

Russia's nuclear threats

The Russian Defense Ministry announced the start of preparations for exercises involving the use of non-strategic nuclear weapons.

The United States responded to the Kremlin's threatening rhetoric. Washington has advised Vladimir Putin to withdraw his troops from Ukraine if he fears Western military assistance to Kyiv.

At the same time, ISW analysts noted that Russia has often used such threats to force the West to stop military assistance to Kyiv during a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Read more about why Russia is planning nuclear exercises in RBC-Ukraine's article.