At a time when the pace of the Russian-Ukrainian war is escalating, the statements of Russian President Vladimir Putin came to include many messages, whether to Ukraine or to Western countries that have stepped up their support for the Ukrainian side in the recent period.
Putin was speaking during the plenary session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, which was held on Friday in the presence of a number of heads of state and senior diplomats and economists in the world, and a large part of his statements focused on the war waged by his country against Ukraine.
This war began on February 24, 2022, and Moscow requires that Kiev abandon plans to join military entities in reference to NATO, which Ukraine rejects and considers an interference in its sovereignty.
The following are the highlights of what Putin confirmed regarding the war on Ukraine:
- The counterattack that Ukraine launched about a week ago has no chance of success.
- If attacks on Russia’s border regions continue, Russia will consider the possibility of creating a buffer zone inside Ukraine.
- We see well the Western efforts to inflict a strategic defeat on Prussia. They are doing everything to make it happen. But we, in turn, set a specific task in this regard, which is the disarmament of Ukraine.
- Very soon, Ukraine will exhaust all the weapons it has manufactured, and it will depend only on Western military support and Western weapons, but it will not be able to fight for long by relying on Western weapons. As for us, we are advancing in our military industries. Our production has increased 10 times.
- Russia is capable of destroying any building in the center of the Ukrainian capital, Kiev.
- The targeting of the Kremlin and the attacks on the Belgorod region and the surrounding areas are an attempt to provoke us into taking strong retaliatory measures.
- If we destroyed five Patriot systems on the outskirts of the capital, what would stop us from destroying any building or facility in the center of Kiev?
- Everyone is waiting for us to press buttons, but there is no need for that because the enemy is not achieving any successes on the front lines of the fronts.
- NATO is dragged into the war in Ukraine, they continue to supply heavy weapons to Kiev, and now they are considering the possibility of supplying them with aircraft.
- The West is looking to supply Ukraine with F-16 fighters, and Russia will destroy those fighters as it destroyed the German Leppard tanks.
- In the event that these aircraft are deployed in bases outside the Ukrainian territory, and used in military operations, then we will consider where and how we will destroy the means that are used in military operations against us.
- We have every right to consider the goal of de-Nazification in Ukraine one of the main goals of the military operation… Why is no one listening to us?
Putin’s statements extended to talk about Russian nuclear weapons and changes in the world, as he said:
- Russia has more nuclear weapons than NATO countries.
- The West is asking us to reduce these weapons, but this will not happen. Russia is obliged to increase defense spending to ensure its security.
- Russia could theoretically use nuclear weapons if there is a threat to its territorial integrity or existence, but it does not need to.
- Russia has begun deploying tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus following an agreement between the two countries, and more forces will be deployed in the coming months.
- The changes taking place in the world and in all basic sectors are profound, radical and irreversible.
- The ugly order of neo-colonialism in its essence is gone and in its place is an increasingly powerful multipolar world.
- Russia was and will remain a player in the international arena.