The head of Russia’s lower house of parliament, the State Duma, said on Sunday that Western military support for Ukraine could bring about a “global catastrophe” and warned of potential retaliation for arms supplies.
“Deliveries of offensive weapons to the Kyiv regime will lead to a global catastrophe,” State Duma Chairman Vyacheslav Volodin wrote on Telegram.
“If Washington and NATO countries supply weapons that will be used to strike civilian cities and attempt to seize our territories, as they threaten, this will lead to retaliatory measures using more powerful weapons,” he said.
Volodin’s warning came after The New York Times reported the Biden administration was considering helping Ukraine attack Crimea, which Russia has controlled since 2014 but neither Washington nor Kyiv recognize as Russian territory. The administration previously avoided backing such operations over fears of escalation, but now it is less concerned even though the risk still clearly exists.
“Given the technological superiority of Russian weapons, foreign politicians making such decisions need to understand that this could end in a global tragedy that will destroy their countries,” Volodin added.
Volodin also hinted Russia could use nuclear weapons if it feels its “territorial integrity” is threatened. “Arguments that the nuclear powers have not previously used weapons of mass destruction in local conflicts are untenable. Because these states did not face a situation where there was a threat to the security of their citizens and the territorial integrity of the country,” he wrote.
Dmitry Medvedev, the former president and current deputy head of Russia’s Security Council, made a similar warning last week when he hinted Russia could use nuclear weapons if it loses a conventional war in Ukraine.
“None of them gets it that a nuclear power’s loss of a conventional war can lead to a nuclear one. Nuclear powers haven’t been defeated in major conflicts crucial for their destiny,” Medvedev said. The Kremlin said that the former Russian president’s comments align with Russia’s military doctrine, which allows the use of nuclear weapons if Russia’s existence is threatened.