Sanctions and peace initiatives: what Putin told reporters in Hanoi

  HANOI: Possible changes in Russia’s nuclear doctrine, a treaty on military aid with North Korea, peace initiatives and sanctions were amon...


HANOI: Possible changes in Russia’s nuclear doctrine, a treaty on military aid with North Korea, peace initiatives and sanctions were among the issues raised by Russian President Vladimir Putin when he concluded his visit to Vietnam.

TASS gathered the Russian leader’s key statements

Treaty on strategic partnership with North Korea

Russia has signed a strategic partnership treaty with North Korea to replace the old one, and there is "nothing new" about it. "Of course, in modern-day conditions it looks particularly resonant in some way, but nevertheless we have changed almost nothing," Putin said. "The Democratic People's Republic of Korea has similar treaties with other countries as well."

Moscow expects its agreements with Pyongyang to "serve as a deterrent to a certain extent" that will prevent the Korean crisis "from escalating into a hot phase."

Countries that deliver weapons to the Kiev regime take no responsibility for their future use, and, in this context, Moscow reserves the right to supply weapons to other countries and regions: "Given our agreements with North Korea, I do not rule this out."

Commenting on a recent Wall Street Journal report that said the US hadn’t anticipated the agreement, Putin said: "We are talking about it openly, and you don't need to do electronic intelligence or engage assets for intelligence to understand where things are going."

Special military operation

Russia has not asked North Korea for help in the conflict with Ukraine, and Pyongyang has never offered it.

The mutual defense pact with North Korea applies "in the event of aggression, military aggression," but "the Ukrainian regime did not start aggression against Russia." "It started aggression against the Donetsk and Lugansk people's republics that we recognized as independent - before they became part of the Russian Federation," the Russian president said.

Ukrainian attempts to drive out Russian forces from the Kharkov Region at any price "will again cost the Ukrainian armed forces very dearly." The West is pushing Ukraine into driving the Russian forces out of the region so that it can later be declared a "major success of 2024." At the same time, Russia has no goal of approaching Kharkov. The Russian armed forces are prepared for "all possible developments" on the frontline.

Peace initiatives

Russia’s preconditions for peace talks will change depending on the situation on the ground. Russia is ready to negotiate a settlement of the Ukrainian conflict as early as tomorrow, its proposals "are on the table," and it does not matter where the negotiations will take place: in Minsk, Istanbul or Switzerland.

However, the negotiations "will never happen" if Kiev continues to name the withdrawal of Russian troops among its essential preconditions.

West’s response to Russia’s peace initiatives was expected: " I think that some level-headed politicians will think about whether my proposals are realistic enough, unbiased, and in accord with the interests of all contracting parties."

Kiev government

The incumbent Kiev government is reluctant to give up power and, therefore, has no plans of holding elections in accordance with Ukraine’s constitution: "They will keep delaying a ceasefire, they are interested in our military presence in these territories, because they are not interested in holding elections."

NATO in Asia

The bloc system is becoming more active in Asia, NATO is practically ‘moving’ to the region, which poses a security threat to Russia and demands a response. "We see what is going on in Asia: the bloc system is being put together. NATO is practically moving there permanently. This, of course, poses a threat to all countries in the region, including Russia. We are obliged to respond to this, and we will do so," Putin said.

South Korea’s concerns

The Republic of Korea has nothing to worry about the new Russian-DPRK treaty, because Russian military aid "will happen only in case of an aggression against one signatory." the Russian leader said. South Korea does not plan an aggression against North Korea, which means "there is no need to be afraid of our cooperation in this area."

Possible changes in nuclear doctrine

Russia’s strategic nuclear forces are always in a state of full combat readiness, and that is why "what is being done now in the Western countries is of little concern to us." "But we are watching it closely and, in case of any threats begin to grow, we will respond properly and proportionately," Putin added.

However, unfriendly countries are working to create new elements of weapons to lower the threshold for activating their nuclear weapons, so Russia is now considering amendments to its nuclear doctrine. "This is because new elements are arising - at least we know that the potential adversary is working on it - related to lowering the threshold for using nuclear weapons. In particular, ultra-low-power nuclear explosive devices are being developed."

However, Russia has no intentions to include a provision on the possibility of a preemptive nuclear strike into its nuclear doctrine, because a retaliatory strike will be enough to destroy the enemy.

West’s pressure

West’s regime of sanctions against North Korea is inhumane and reminiscent of the Siege of Leningrad. "The sanctions that are introduced, first of all for political reasons in this case, must correspond to the current level of humanity’s development," he said. We all need to think together about how and what needs to be changed in this sanction regime, and whether it generally meets the requirements of today."

The intensity of the US government’s policy of pressure and sanctions "is not always beneficial for them." "It harms them from the strategic standpoint, because no one likes snobs." Apparently, the West is fuelling the escalation in the hope of intimidating Russia and forcing it to give up, but this will mean "an end to the millennia-old history" of the Russian state. "So, a question arises: what’s the point in being scared. Would not it be better to find to the end in this case?"

Russia has learned how to cope with sanctions: "In fact, we are succeeding in all areas. There are certain difficulties, but there are also ways to resolve all these difficulties."

United Nations

The global situation is changing, and this necessitates a reform of the United Nations, which should be "based on broad consensus," not on "behind-the-scenes decisions made by a group of nations." Otherwise, the UN Security Council will lose its ability to be "an instrument for settling disputes."

Cooperation with Vietnam

Russia can both produce liquefied natural gas in Vietnam and supply it to the country from its territory. "There are different options here: we can take part in the construction of the appropriate liquefaction capacities, or we can supply our liquefied gas from the territory of the Russian Federation. Either way, it’s possible, there are prospects here, there are corresponding blocks where we can operate and produce liquefied natural gas."

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Local Glob: Sanctions and peace initiatives: what Putin told reporters in Hanoi
Sanctions and peace initiatives: what Putin told reporters in Hanoi
Local Glob
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