The possibility of Ukraine joining NATO poses a threat to European security by creating the grounds for a major conflict between Russia and the military bloc, according to the country’s President Vladimir Putin.
Ukraine’s official state doctrine includes an intention to restore its sovereignty over the Crimean Peninsula, which has been part of Russia since 2014, including by “military means.” A potential NATO membership would let Ukraine be fully equipped with state-of-the-art offensive weapons.
Such developments could prompt Kiev to proceed with its plan to start a military “operation” in Crimea, and consequently, Moscow would then have to respond, as now it’s the Russian sovereign territory which was decided by the locals themselves.
“So, what do we do, go to war with the entire NATO bloc? Has anyone even thought about that? No one apparently has,” Putin warned.
Speaking on Tuesday, February 1, Putin also expressed doubt that Ukraine’s security was Washington’s primary concern, as, according to the head of the state, the US is driven by a desire to “contain” Russia and is creating a conflict on Russia’s border that would allow the Americans and their allies to slap Moscow with another batch of sanctions.