On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Western powers are taking Moscow’s “red lines” too lightly.
“We’re constantly voicing our concerns about this, talking about red lines, but we understand our partners — how shall I put it mildly — have a very superficial attitude to all our warnings and talk of red lines,” Putin said in a foreign policy speech.
The Russian leader has warned NATO against expanding cooperation with Ukraine, but NATO countries continue to do so. This week, the UK signed a new navy deal with Kyiv to build warships for Russia’s neighbor.
The US and NATO have stepped up military activity in the Black Sea, which Moscow views as a major provocation. Putin described this activity as going “beyond boundaries” and said a Western strategic bomber recently flew within 20 kilometers (12.5 miles) of Russia’s borders. US B1-B bombers recently flew over the Black Sea, but it’s not clear how close they were to Russian territory.
Putin said that NATO has destroyed all mechanisms for dialogue with Moscow. The military alliance recently expelled diplomats from Russia’s mission to NATO in Brussels, and Moscow responded by closing the mission.
Putin described relations with the US as “unsatisfactory,” but said he was open to more talks. “However, I want to say once again, we are open to contacts and exchanges of opinion, constructive dialogue,” he said.