Russia-Ukraine War: First Batch of Nuclear Weapons Moved to Belarus
Written by Sanjay Kumar
- Putin deploys the first batch of nuclear weapons in Belarus, raising tensions.
- Weapons intended for defensive purposes says Russian President.
- US downplays nuclear threat, but situation closely monitored.
- Currency: Russian Ruble Trending
- Capital: Moscow
- Area: 17.1 million km²
- Population: 14.34 crores (2021) World Bank
- Prime minister: Mikhail Mishustin
- Continent: Europe, Asia
According to a report by the BBC, Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced a significant development in the ongoing Ukraine war. It has been confirmed that Moscow has already stationed the first batch of tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus.
However, Putin emphasized that these weapons would only be utilized if Russia’s territory or state was under threat. The United States government responded by stating that there were no indications of Russia intending to employ nuclear weapons to attack Ukraine.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken remarked, “We don’t see any indications that Russia is preparing to use a nuclear weapon,” as quoted by the BBC.
It is worth noting that Belarus has been a crucial ally of Russia and served as a launching point for Putin’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February of the previous year. Putin discussed the transfer of weapons, mentioning that it would be completed by the end of the summer.
During a Q&A session at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the Russian president stated that the move was intended for “containment” and to serve as a reminder to anyone considering “inflicting a strategic defeat on us.” When asked about the possibility of utilizing these weapons, he replied, “Why should we threaten the whole world? I have already said that the use of extreme measures is possible in case there is a danger to Russian statehood,” as quoted by the BBC.
Tactical nuclear weapons are designed to target and destroy specific enemy locations without causing widespread radioactive fallout. They are smaller-scale nuclear warheads. According to the BBC, the smallest tactical nuclear weapons can have a yield of one kiloton or less (equivalent to a thousand tonnes of TNT explosives), while the largest ones can reach up to 100 kilotons. By comparison, the atomic bomb dropped by the United States on Hiroshima in 1945 had a yield of 15 kilotons.
Following their visit to Kyiv as part of a peace initiative, President Putin is scheduled to meet with African leaders in St. Petersburg.
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