Vladimir Putin called for making sure their missiles can penetrate any missile-defence systems
MOSCOW: Russia's President Vladimir Putin on Thursday called for reinforcing the country's military nuclear potential and making sure its missiles can penetrate any missile-defence systems. "We need to strengthen the military potential of strategic nuclear forces, especially with missile complexes that can reliably penetrate any existing and prospective missile defence systems," Putin said at a defence ministry meeting, quoted by Russian agencies.
"We must carefully monitor any changes in the balance of power and in the political-military situation in the world, especially along Russian borders, and quickly adapt plans for neutralising threats to our country."
He said Russia's military had successfully shown its capabilities in Syria. "The Syrian army received considerable support, thanks to which it carried out several successful operations against militants." Russia has flown an air campaign in Syria since September 2015 in support of President Bashar al-Assad, with its special operations contingents also operating on the ground in the country. Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said the military has "tested 162 types of modern armaments during military campaign in Syria," including its Sukhoi warplanes and MiG and Kamov helicopters. "They have shown to be highly effective," he said.
Trump: Expanding Nuke Capabilities 'Until World Comes To Its Senses'
23rd December (Tweet)
President-elect Donald Trump signaled Thursday that he will look to "strengthen and expand" the US's nuclear capability hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin pledged to enhance his country's nuclear forces.
The exchange appeared to raise the prospect of a new arms race between the two nuclear superpowers, which between them boast more than 14,000 nuclear warheads, the still deadly legacy of their four-decades long Cold War standoff. But the comments by Putin, who is presiding over a project to restore Russia's lost global power and influence, and Trump, who will shortly become the US commander-in-chief, did not spell out exactly what each side is proposing or whether a major change of nuclear doctrine is in the offing.
Trump weighed in with a tweet just hours after Putin spoke following a meeting with his military advisers to review the activity of the past year. "The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes," Trump wrote. It was not immediately clear if the President-elect is proposing an entire new nuclear policy that he would begin to flesh out once he takes office next year.
Trump could also be referring to plans to modernize the current US nuclear arsenal that are currently underway and will cost hundreds of billions of dollars. The Obama administration has outlined a plan to modernize delivery systems, command and control systems and to refurbish warheads in the US nuclear triad -- the US force of sea, airborne and missile delivered nuclear weapons.