Russian President Vladimir Putin has outlined reasons he would respond by using nuclear weapons.
“We have two reasons that would force us to respond using our nuclear weapons,” he said. “The first is a nuclear attack against us or an attack against the Russian Federation using conventional weapons. But in this case, if it’s a threat to the very existence of the Russian state.”
His comments came in an interview with NBC News’ Megyn Kelly. A clip of the interview was shown on “Today.”
Putin denied a new cold war has started between Russia and the U.S.
“My point of view is that the individuals who have said a new cold war has started are not really analysts,” he said. “They do propaganda.
“If you were to speak about an arms race, then an arms race began at exactly the time and moment when the U.S opted out of the anti-ballistic missile treaty.”
In his annual address to the Russian Parliament, Putin hailed his nation’s military technology by rolling out an animation featuring multiple nuclear warheads raining down on what appeared to be Florida.
Kelly told Putin: “Some analysts suggested you tested it and it failed and that’s why you showed animations of it today and have not shown actual videos.”
He replied: “As a matter of fact, every single weapon discussed today easily surpasses and avoids an anti-missile defense system.
“The test was excellent. Some of them still have to be fine-tuned and worked on. Others are already available to the troops and are already at battle-ready.”