There Will Be Harsh Retaliation If You Continue attacking Russia – Putin Warns Ukraine

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Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday threatened a “harsh response” against Ukraine if it “continues its terrorist attacks” after the Russian army carried out a “massive attack” on Ukraine’s capital Kiev and other cities following Saturday’s explosion on the Kerch Bridge, which connects the country to the Crimean Peninsula annexed in 2014.

He confirmed “a massive attack with high-precision and long-range weapons” on several points in Ukraine and said they were carried out “at the suggestion of the defence ministry”. Putin said “energy facilities, military command posts and communications centres” had been hit, he said.

“If attempts to carry out terrorist attacks on our territory continue, Russia’s response will be harsh and on a scale corresponding to the level of threats to the Russian Federation,” he said during a meeting with members of the Russian Security Council, according to the Russian news agency TASS.

“No one should doubt this,” Putin said, stressing that “the Kiev regime by its actions has put itself on the same level as international terrorist groups.” “It is simply impossible to leave these crimes unanswered,” he argued.

He called attacks by Ukrainian forces on the Zaporiyia nuclear power plant, controlled by Russian troops, “nuclear terrorism” and condemned that Ukrainian special services “have carried out three terrorist attacks on the Kursk nuclear power plant in Russia”.

Putin said these “attacks” had caused three high-voltage power lines to be cut and claimed that “with the measures taken, the damage has been eliminated as quickly as possible, without any serious consequences”, as reported by the Interfax news agency.

“The regime in Kiev has been using terrorist methods for a long time,” he stressed, before accusing Ukraine of “murdering public figures, journalists and scientists, both in Ukraine and in Russia”. “There have been terrorist attacks in the Donbas for more than eight years. There are acts of nuclear terrorism,” he said.

In the same vein, he condemned “several terrorist attacks and criminal attempts against power plants and gas infrastructure in the country, including an attempt to undermine one of the sections of the Turkish Stream”. Putin also noted that although Russia may not participate in the investigation of the alleged sabotage of Nord Stream, the “ultimate beneficiary” is known.

“In the direction of Kupiansk, the enemy, with the help of four tactical groupings, carried out fruitless attempts at offensive operations against the settlements of Kislovka, Tabaevka, Kharkov and Kuzemovka,” he said, noting that Ukrainian forces “unsuccessfully” tried to cross the Zerebets River near Makeyevka and Taigorodka in the Lugansk region.

“All attempts by the Ukrainian armed forces to establish river crossings were prevented by concentrated rocket and artillery fire,” Konashenkov said, also saying that attacks around Krivi Róg were repelled. Active action by the Russian troops repulsed the enemy and forced them back to their original positions, he said.

The spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry stressed that “the losses of Ukraine’s armed forces in this direction over the past day amounted to 60 servicemen, nine tanks, 16 armored vehicles and 17 vehicles.”

Local authorities have so far confirmed that eight people have died in the attacks on Kiev, while four people have died in Sloviansk and another has been killed in Zaporiyia. Other cities such as Lviv, Kharkov, Yitomir and Dnipro have been hit by shelling.

The attacks come hours after the Russian president blamed Ukrainian intelligence for Saturday’s “terrorist attack” on the Kerch bridge linking Russia to the Crimean peninsula, which left it partially unusable and at least three people dead.

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