Don’t cross the red line with Russia: Putin’s stern message to the West
- Vladimir Putin also denounced Western silence on Belarus strongman Alexander Lukashenko’s claim that his security services had thwarted an alleged US plot to assassinate him.
President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday warned Russia’s foreign rivals against “crossing the red line” with Moscow, as he gave a state of the nation speech amid deep tensions with the West.
“In some countries, they have started an obscene custom of blaming Russia for anything,” Putin told gathered lawmakers and regional governors in a speech broadcast on national television. “It’s some kind of sport - a new kind of sport.”
The Russian president added that Moscow wants “good relations” with all members of the international community - even with those that it does not see eye to eye. “But if someone perceives our good intentions as weakness... let them know that Russia’s response will be asymmetric and harsh,” he said.
“I hope that no one will think of crossing the red line in relation to Russia. And where it will be - we will determine that ourselves,” he added.
Putin also denounced Western silence on Belarus strongman Alexander Lukashenko’s claim that his security services had thwarted an alleged US plot to assassinate him.
“Everyone pretends that nothing is happening at all,” Putin said in his address, referring to the West.