12:00 GMT12 April 2021
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    US and NATO statements criticizing Russia’s nuclear weapons doctrine are close to a fiction, Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak told Sputnik.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik), Leandra Bernstein — US and NATO statements criticizing Russia’s nuclear weapons doctrine amount to a fiction, Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak told Sputnik.

    “It is a fantasy,” Kislyak stated on Wednesday, responding to recent statements from NATO officials alleging that Russia’s nuclear doctrine fails to adequately distinguish conventional and nuclear war.

    On Saturday, NATO officials meeting in Munich criticized Moscow’s nuclear doctrine, which states that Russia can use nuclear weapons in a conventional war setting if the nation faces an existential threat.

    Western officials have interpreted the doctrine to accuse Moscow of adopting an escalatory policy.

    “There are so many things that are imagined about Russia, fantasies, sometimes absurd, that are advanced as an argument against Russia,” Kislyak explained. He noted the tendency among US and NATO officials to “fight what they invented themselves.”

    On Saturday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Russia is blurring the line between conventional and nuclear conflict, basing his assessment on recent statements and Russian military exercises simulating nuclear conflict.

    Russian officials have stated their nuclear deterrence policy has not changed in recent years, despite the release of a new military doctrine at the beginning of 2016.

    Russia maintains the right to use its nuclear arsenal to deter conventional or strategic attack by an adversary.


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    defense policy, new Cold War, bilateral relations, threat, military doctrine, nuclear weapons, NATO, Sergei Kislyak, Europe, US, Russia
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