Vladimir Putin's chilling warning on nuclear threat

Annual big press conference of the Russian President V. Putin

Washington has threatened to pull out of the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) which bans Moscow and Washington from stationing short- and intermediate-range, land-based missiles in Europe.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is warning about the rising threat of a nuclear war.

Putin also pointed out the Japanese government is building an alternative base for the US air station Futenma, now located in central Okinawa, in the Henoko district of Nago, further north, despite strong opposition from local residents and Okinawa Gov. Denny Tamaki.

Washington has invited the Russian leader to visit in 2019, but such a visit could prove controversial because USA intelligence agencies have concluded that Moscow meddled in the 2016 United States presidential election in favour of Mr Trump. Regarding the recent standoff with Ukraine, he accused President Petro Poroshenko of seeking to increase his rating by staging provocations in the Black Sea. U.S. officials say the withdrawal from the INF was prompted by Russian violations of the treaty.

"We are essentially witnessing the breakdown of the global arms control order and (the start of) an arms race", Putin told more than 1,000 reporters. "OK, we know how to ensure our security", he said.

Mr Putin said there were a growing tendency to underestimate the threat of nuclear war, and criticised President Trump's plan to withdraw from a key nuclear treaty with Russian Federation.

But the Russian president welcomed US President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw the US military from Syria, saying the country "has done the right thing". But for humanity in general, this is a bad thing because it leads us to a very risky place, and there's this trend to lower the threshold for actually using these weapons. Putin has rejected the USA claim that Russian Federation violated the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty by developing a new cruise missile.

Earlier this month North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, at US request formally declared Russian Federation to be in violation of the INF and demanded that it halt activity that breaches it.

An image provided by Vandenberg Air Force Base shows an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile being launched during an operational test Wednesday
Force BaseUS Likely to Proceed With INF Pullout Even if UN Backs Treaty- Russian Envoy

Putin said it's the U.S., not Russian Federation, that's aspiring to dominate the world.

Ryabkov accused Washington of "extremely intrusive" attempts to shine a light on Russian rocket manufacturing and said that Washington had in the past rebuffed Russian requests to look inside U.S. submarines under another arms control treaty. The pullout is also likely to strengthen Russia's role in Syria's future.

Putin said accusations of Russian interference in the West were trumped-up.

Putin, who was addressing more than 1,000 reporters from around the world, many of them holding up signs to attract his attention, faced a tougher task defending his domestic record.

President Vladimir Putin is hailing another year of Russian economic growth after a previous period of stagnation.

Mr Putin said the economy grew 1.7 percent over the first 10 months of the year, roughly in line with predictions, while unemployment was down.

However, the Russian president cast doubt on whether or not Trump would follow through, noting how the US has announced several withdrawals after 17 years in Afghanistan.

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