Raging Putin vows revenge against UK for ‘direct involvement in Ukraine war’

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Vladimir Putin has accused the UK of directly interfering in his war against Ukraine – and vowed revenge.

The Russian president was speaking to international journalists at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum when he claimed British armed forces are targeting missiles hitting Russian targets.

And he threatened to supply his advanced weaponry to Britain’s enemies, as well as other Western countries providing long-range weapons to Ukraine.

Putin also accused the US and France of using its armed forces to target Russian positions.

He again threatened to use nuclear weapons if Russia’s ‘sovereignty and territorial integrity’ are threatened, warning: ‘This should not be taken lightly, superficially.’

Putin said: ‘With regard to long-range precision weapons, such as the British Storm Shadow or the American ATACMS or French missiles, how is it used?

Vladimir Putin speaks to the media at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).
Putin spoke at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum (Picture: Kremlin/east2west news)
The Storm Shadow cruise missile is on display during the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget, north of Paris, France, on June 19, 2023.
Putin accused the UK of directly interfering in the war with Ukraine (Picture: AP)
Vladimir Putin speaks to the media at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).
He says Britain is responsible for programming the missiles and choosing their targets (Picture: Kremlin/east2west news)

‌’Ukrainian servicemen cannot do everything on their own and strike with this missile.

‌’They are simply technologically unable to do it.

‌’To do this, you need to have satellite reconnaissance, then, on the basis of this satellite reconnaissance, to form a flight task, and then enter it into the missile system.

‌’The serviceman who is next to it, he does it just automatically – he pushes buttons. He may not even know what will happen next.’

Putin made clear he sees this as direct Western involvement in the war.

‘I repeat, the flight task is formed and…entered only by those who supply these weapons,’ he claimed.

‌’If it’s ATACMS, then the Pentagon does it. If it is Storm Shadow, it means that the British are doing it. And in the case of Storm Shadow, it’s even simpler.

‌’The simplicity lies in the fact that the flight task is entered automatically, without the involvement of military personnel on the ground, automatically. The British do it, so that’s it.’

He also singled out Germany – which also recently allowed Ukraine to hit Russian targets with German-made weapons – saying the move ‘definitively destroys Russian-German relations’.

Putin said there could be an ‘asymmetrical response’ for Western long-range missiles deployed by Ukraine to hit Russian territory.

Until now, these weapons have been used only to strike Russian-invaded areas of Ukraine, but Kyiv now has permission for strikes near the Kharkiv region after US president Joe Biden loosened restrictions.

Putin made clear he was also ready to supply weapons in the way NATO countries had, but in his case to enemies of Britain and other Western counties.

He asked: ‘What should we do in response? First, we will, of course, improve our air defence systems. We will destroy them.

‌’Second, we are thinking that if someone considers it possible to supply such weapons to a war zone to strike at our territory and create problems for us, then why do we not have the right to supply our weapons of the same class to those regions of the world where they will strike at sensitive facilities of those countries that are doing this to Russia?

‌’So the response could be asymmetrical. We will think about this.’

 A view of damaged residential area after Russian attack with S-300 missiles hit Kharkiv, Ukraine on May 31, 2024.
Kharkiv has seen significant action in recent weeks (Picture: Getty/Anadolu)
Firefighters work at a site of a household items shopping mall hit by yesterday's Russian airstrike, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine May 26, 2024. REUTERS/Sofiia Gatilova
Kharkiv is only a few miles from the border with Russia (Picture: REUTERS)

Putin did not specify exactly who he had in mind to supply weapons to.

‘If we see that these countries are being drawn into a war against the Russian Federation, then we reserve the right to act in the same way. In general, this is a path to very serious problems,’ he said.

On nuclear war, he warned the West not to turn a blind eye to the risk.

‘For some reason, the West believes that Russia will never use it,’ Putin said.

‘We have a nuclear doctrine, look what it says.

‘If someone’s actions threaten our sovereignty and territorial integrity, we consider it possible for us to use all means at our disposal.

‘This should not be taken lightly, superficially.’

The doctrine dating from 2020 says Russia could press the button as a response to an attack using nuclear or other weapons of mass destruction, or to the use of conventional weapons against Russia ‘when the very existence of the state is put under threat’.

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