Vladimir Putin fires off nuclear threat over West’s ‘regime change’ plans for Iran
RUSSIAN Prime Minister Vladimir Putin accuses the West of seeking “regime change” in Iran and warns Washington that Russia intends to keep its nuclear weapons to keep US power in check.
“Under the guise of trying to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction… they are attempting something else entirely and setting different goals – regime change,” news agencies quoted Mr Putin as saying.
“We have such suspicions,” said Putin. “And we are trying to take a stand that differs from the one they are trying to force on us… concerning the ways that the Iranian nuclear problem might develop.”
Russia has longstanding commercial and military ties with Iran and has condemned unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union over its suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons.
Russia now faces both Western and Arab world condemnation for its refusal to blame Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for an 11-month crackdown on street protests that the opposition says has claimed more than 7600 lives.
The Russian strongman earlier this month accused Western powers of acting “like a bull in a china shop” in Arab conflicts and on Friday firmly defended Russia’s veto of a UN Security Council resolution that blamed the violence on Assad.
“I think that our position at the UN Security Council on Syria shows that we do not intend to be anyone’s yes-men. And I hope that this is how things continue,” said Putin.
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