Putin says he’ll strengthen nuclear forces after suspending Russian participation in treaty
BY JULIA MUELLER – 02/23/23 11:13 AM ET
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday said he would strengthen Moscow’s nuclear forces after he moved to suspend Russia’s participation in its major nuclear arms treaty with the U.S.
Putin said Moscow will “put our focus on strengthening the nuclear triad” of land, air and sea weapons, according to a transcript from the Kremlin. His remarks came one day before the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“This year, the first Sarmat missile system launchers with the new heavy missile will be put on combat duty. We will continue full production of the Kinzhal air-launched hypersonic systems and begin mass deployment of Tsirkon sea-launched hypersonic missiles,” Putin said.
“With the Borei-A nuclear-powered submarine Emperor Alexander III becoming operational in the Navy, the share of modern weapons and equipment in the naval strategic nuclear forces will reach 100 percent. In the coming years, three more cruisers from this project will be delivered to the Navy.”
Putin announced he was suspending Russia’s participation in the New START nuclear arms treaty in a speech hours before President Biden gave remarks in Warsaw, Poland, to highlight U.S. support for Ukraine and vow that “Putin’s craven lust for land and power will fail.”
The U.S. president a day earlier had visited embattled Kyiv, Ukraine, to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. It was his first trip to the country since the start of the war.5 questions remaining on East Palestine derailment after preliminary NTSB reportTrump lawyers call Georgia special grand jury proceedings ‘clown-like’ after forewoman’s remarks
Biden called Russia’s suspension of the arms treaty a “big mistake” but later said the U.S. has no indication Moscow is moving to actually use the weapons.
“It’s a big mistake to do that. Not very responsible. And — but I don’t read into that that he’s thinking of using nuclear weapons or anything like that,” Biden told ABC News.