President Putin has warned the US that its deployment of a new anti-missile network across Eastern Europe would prompt Russia to point its own missiles at European targets and could trigger nuclear war.
In an exclusive interview with The Times, the Russian leader says: “It is obvious that if part of the strategic nuclear potential of the US is located in Europe and will be threatening us, we will have to respond.
“This system of missile defence on one side and the absence of this system on the other . . . increases the possibility of unleashing a nuclear conflict.”
Russia has been alarmed at America’s plans to install a network of defences in Eastern Europe to shoot down incoming missiles it fears that Iran might launch