Russian Senator Promises Nuclear Response to NATO Expansion
In response to NATO’s efforts to enlist new member-countries, a member of the defense and security committee for Russia’s Upper House has said that Russia will target any sites it considers to be a threat with nuclear weapons.
“In reply to NATO’s aggressive actions, to the alliance’s attempts to draw more and more nations into their orbit, there will be a harsh and unambiguous response from Russia’s side. We will aim our weapons, including the nuclear ones, at any of the alliance’s site that would threaten us, wherever these sites are placed,” RIA Novosti quoted Senator Franz Klintsevich as saying. The senator also explained that by nuclear weapons he meant both stationary land-based systems, and mobile weapons, including sea- and air-based systems.
Vladimir Putin’s press secretary, Dmitry Peskov, told reporters on Friday that Klintsevich’s position was understandable, but also warned against jumping to hasty conclusions.
“Russian lawmakers have the right for own opinion, they are vividly reacting to international events, to NATO’s expansion towards Russian borders, and to the expansion of NATO’s military infrastructure. This makes their position understandable,” Peskov said. At the same time, he noted that, according to the Russian Constitution, lawmakers cannot determine the country’s foreign policy, as that is solely the president’s prerogative.
In late October of this year, Senator Klintsevich told Norwegian television TV2 that Russia was concerned about US plans to deploy marines at a Norwegian base which he sees as part of its Prompt Global Strike doctrine. The implementation of this plan would force Russia to target sites in Norway with strategic weapons, which it has never had to do before.