ARKHANGELSK, March 30. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he was confident that all accusations of aggressiveness brought against Russia are ’talks to feed the poor.’
"And someone tries after this to accuse us of some aggressive behavior. This is simply a talk to feed the poor and this is [only suitable] for the media," the Russian leader said at a plenary session of the Arctic: Territory of Dialogue forum, commenting on the West’s accusations.
As Putin said, Russia supported Finland’s concern about warplanes’ flights over the Baltic Sea with turned-off transponders. Despite technical difficulties, Russia was ready to make everything possible on its part and use these devices but NATO refused to meet it halfway.
"Let you ask them, why?" the president told the discussion participants at the session.
Responding to the accusations of aggressiveness voiced against Russia, Putin noted that NATO’s military activity was several times higher than the activity of the Russian army, judging at least by the number of planes flying over the Baltic Sea.
"Experts are registering this and know about this," the Russian leader said.
Speaking about the United States, the Russian leader said that Russia "is not going either to be at war or compete with the United States." Putin cited the data that the United States was spending more on defense than all the countries of the world taken together.
"The quicker we establish cooperation in the military sphere, the better," Putin said, adding that Russia and the United States were the world’s largest nuclear powers.