US President Joe Biden said the United States has its responses ready if Russian President Vladimir Putin uses nuclear weapons in Ukraine.
During an interview with CNN, Biden said that US has gamed out all possible scenarios that may perpetuate in Ukraine war including the use of a nuclear weapon. “The Pentagon didn’t have to be asked,” Biden said in response to a question about whether he’d directed Pentagon to come up with contingencies in the ongoing Russa-Ukraine war.
CNN asked Biden what is the red line for the US and NATO in Ukraine and what Washington would do if Putin bombed a nuclear plant in Ukraine or set off a tactical nuclear weapon.
“It would be irresponsible for me to talk about what we would or wouldn’t do,” Biden said. Another key takeaway from the interview was Biden’s response on whether he would meet Russian President Putin during the G20 summit in Indonesia next month.
Biden, while not ruling out the meeting said that there are conditions attached. He said that he would sit down with Putin if he were willing to discuss the fate of US basketball star Brittney Griner.
Notably, Griner was detained by Russia and was sentenced in August to nine years in prison in drug smuggling case. US, however, said that Griner and another American, former US Marine Paul Whelan, have been wrongfully detained.
Washington has also offered to swap jailed Russian arms trafficker Viktor Bout for the two Americans. “Look, I have no intention of meeting with him, but look, if he came to me at the G20 and said, ‘I want to talk about the release of Griner,’ I would meet with him, but that would depend,” Biden said, reported CNN.
“He’s acted brutally, I think he’s committed war crimes, and so I don’t… see any rationale to meet with him now,” he added during his CNN interview.
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Meanwhile, a day after Russia’s large-scale missile strikes on Ukrainian cities, Group of Seven (G7) nations condemned the attacks and warned that the use of nuclear weapons on Ukraine will have severe consequences, according to a statement released by the White House.
Leaders of G7 states (the UK, Germany, Italy, Canada, the US, France, and Japan) said, “We deplore deliberate Russian escalator steps, including the partial mobilization of reservists and irresponsible nuclear rhetoric, which is putting global peace and security at risk. We reaffirm that any use of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons by Russia would be met with severe consequences.”
Earlier, on Monday, Russia conducted that large-scale strikes on the Ukrainian capital Kyiv and other locations on Monday, which drew condemnation from several countries.
The statement came after the G7 held a meeting with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy that took place against the backdrop of the recent missile attacks against civilian infrastructure and cities across Ukraine, leading to the death of innocent civilians.
Talking about Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s four regions, the G7 said that Russia has blatantly violated the principles enshrined in the UN Charter.
“They cannot and do not give Russia a legitimate basis to change Ukraine’s borders. We call upon all countries to unequivocally reject these violations of international law and demand that Russia ceases all hostilities and immediately, completely, and unconditionally withdraw all of its troops and military equipment from Ukraine,” the statement said.
G7 in the statement said that they have imposed and will continue to impose further economic costs on Russia, and even on other countries who are providing political or economic support for Russia’s illegal attempts to change the status of Ukrainian territory.
“We reiterate our call on the Belarusian authorities to stop enabling the Russian war of aggression by permitting Russian armed forces to use Belarusian territory and by providing support to the Russian military. The announcement of a joint military group with Russia constitutes the most recent example of the Belarusian regime’s complicity with Russia. We renew our call on the Lukashenko regime to fully abide by its obligations under international law,” the statement said.
“We reaffirm our full support for Ukraine’s independence, territorial integrity, and sovereignty in its internationally recognized borders. In line with international law, in particular the UN Charter, Ukraine has the legitimate right to defend itself against Russian aggression and to regain full control of its territory within its internationally recognized borders,” the statement added.
G7 also said that they are looking forward to the outcomes of the International Expert Conference on the Recovery, Reconstruction, and Modernisation of Ukraine, which is taking place on October 25.
Talking about the “deliberate damage” in Nordstream pipelines, G7 said that they strongly condemn deliberate disruption of critical infrastructure.
“We will act in solidarity and close coordination to address the negative impact of Russia’s aggression for global economic stability, including by continuing to cooperate to ensure energy security and affordability across the G7 and beyond,” G7 said in the statement.