MOSCOW, February 21. /TASS/. Russia’s Defense Ministry and the civilian nuclear power corporation Rosatom should prepare for nuclear tests if need be but Moscow won’t be the first to carry them out, President Vladimir Putin said in his annual address to the Federal Assembly on Tuesday.
The Russian side has "in-depth knowledge" about the United States and knows that the warranty periods of certain types of nuclear weapons are expiring. In this context, "some officials in Washington" are already contemplating "full-scale nuclear weapon tests as the United States is developing new types of nuclear warheads. There is such information," Putin said.
"In this situation, [in the wake of the ideas in the United States to conduct nuclear weapon tests], the Defense Ministry of Russia and Rosatom should be ready for testing Russian nuclear weapons. Naturally, we will not be the first to do that but if the United States conducts the tests, we will also carry them out," the head of state warned.
"No one must have any dangerous illusions that the global strategic parity can be destroyed," Putin stressed.