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    Large-scale war less possible, but threats remain - Russia's security chief

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    Russia's military policies are aimed at avoiding an arms race and military conflicts, but they should also correspond to real threats which the country faces, Russia's security chief Nikolai Patrushev said in an interview with the Russian government daily.

    MOSCOW, February 10 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's military policies are aimed at avoiding an arms race and military conflicts, but they should also correspond to real threats which the country faces, Russia's security chief Nikolai Patrushev said in an interview with the Russian government daily.

    On February 5, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced that he has approved the country's new military doctrine, which allows preventive nuclear strikes against potential aggressors.

    The Rossiyskaya Gazeta published on Wednesday the full text of the doctrine.

    "The unleashing of a large-scale war is becoming less possible... At the same time, regions, where conflicts are possible, remain," Patrushev told the paper, adding "these conflicts could lead to a war with the use of both ordinary and nuclear weapons."

    Among the threats which could destabilize the situation in the world, the Russian security chief named the expansion of NATO, the Iranian nuclear program, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

    "We are interested in the settlement of all problems, and it is very important to avoid war," he said.

    Patrushev said the new military doctrine demonstrated "Russia's adherence to UN regulations, universally acknowledged principles and norms of international law, our international agreements in the defense, armament and disarmament spheres."

    Under the new doctrine, Russia will continue developing and modernizing its nuclear triad, which comprises land-based ballistic missile systems, nuclear-powered submarines equipped with sea-based ballistic missiles, and strategic bombers carrying nuclear bombs and nuclear-capable cruise missiles.

    The new military doctrine also aims to transform the Armed Forces into a more effective and mobile military force. Their structures will be "optimized" through the use of combined arms units performing similar tasks.

    The previous document was adopted in 2000. It outlined the role of the Russian military in ensuring the defense of the country and, if necessary, preparing for and waging war, although it stressed that the Russian military doctrine is strictly defensive.

    MOSCOW, February 10 (RIA Novosti)

     

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