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Kremlin: Putin’s 'heaven' remark symbolism, Russia rejects notion of preemptive strike

Vladimir Putin’s remark about ‘going to heaven’ is just a parable since the main idea behind it is the fact that Russia’s nuclear doctrine stipulates it will ‘never be the first to attack anyone’

MOSCOW, October 22. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s words about heaven are a mere parable as the main focus was made on the fact that Russia’s nuclear doctrine stipulates no preemptive strikes, Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

"He was not speaking about heaven or where we or they will go, he said, and this is the most important thing which was overlooked by many, that as far as Russia’s doctrine is concerned, Russia reserves no right to preemptive strike. It other words, our doctrine provides for no right to preemptive strike," Peskov stressed, adding that Russia reserves the right to a nuclear strike only in case it is attacked with the use of nuclear weapons or attacked in a way that jeopardizes the mere existence of the state.

"It means we will never be the first to attack anyone. This is what the president said. But if we come under attack, then everyone will go where he or she should - either to heaven or to hell, or elsewhere. This is what he meant, the rest was allegory," he said.

In his speech at a session of the Valdai International Discussion Club last Thursday, Putin said, among other things, that Russia’s concept is retaliation against the aggressor. "An aggressor must know that retaliation is inevitable and it will be destroyed. And we, the victims of the aggression, we like martyrs will get into the heaven while they will simply die immediately because they will even have no time to repent," Putin said.