‘Don’t. Don’t. Don’t: Biden warns Putin against nuclear in Ukraine
US President Joe Biden has warned Russian leader Vladimir Putin not to use tactical nuclear or chemical weapons following setbacks in Ukraine.
America’s response would be “consecutive,” he said in a CBS interview, but declined to elaborate.
It comes after the Ukrainian military pushed back Russian forces in the northeast of the country this week, putting the Kremlin on their backs.
Mr Putin has said Moscow will react more forcefully if his troops come under additional pressure, raising fears he may at some point resort to unconventional means such as small nuclear or chemical weapons.
Asked what he would say to Mr Putin if he considered using such weapons, Mr Biden replied: “Don’t do it. Don’t do it. It would change the face of war like never since the Second World War.”
Russia “would become more of a pariah in the world than it ever has been,” Biden said in the interview that aired on Sunday.
“Depending on the extent of what they do, that will determine what response will occur,” he added.
Russian government officials have dismissed suggestions that Moscow would use tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine, but it remains a concern for some in the West.
In a speech announcing the invasion of Ukraine in February, Mr Putin gave a veiled warning that if the West intervened in what he called a “special military operation”, he could use nuclear weapons in response .
He said: “No matter who tries to stand in our way or create threats for our country and our people, they must know that Russia will react immediately and the consequences will be such as you have never seen before. your story. .”
Other choices Mr Putin could make include mobilizing Russian reserves, which number around two million, and pressuring Europe to force Ukraine into a truce with Russia, freezing the region. this winter by banning all energy exports.