EU needs to take seriously risk of Russia using nuclear weapons — Borrell

Josep Borrell, EU Foreign Affairs Representative

© APA | Josep Borrell, EU Foreign Affairs Representative

# 24 September 2022 20:00 (UTC +04:00)

The European Union has to take seriously the possibility of Russia using nuclear weapons, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said in an interview with BBC on Saturday, APA reports.

"When people say it is not a bluff, you have to take them seriously," Borrell said commenting on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s statement made on Wednesday. "Certainly it’s a dangerous moment."

In addition, Borrell pointed out that European countries should continue providing support to Ukraine, including arms supplies, and should not stop their policy of anti-Russian sanctions.

"Everybody who has gone to Moscow, to the Kremlin to talk to Putin, they came back with the same answer, ‘I [Putin] have military objectives, and if I don’t get these military objectives I will continue the fight.’ This is certainly a worrisome direction, but we have to continue to support Ukraine," the EU foreign policy chief said.

According to Borrell, the conflict needs to be resolved through diplomatic efforts, but Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity must be preserved.

He also admitted that the energy price hike caused by the conflict was a matter of serious concern in Europe.

"People in my country (Spain - TASS) tell me the price of the gas means we cannot continue working, we cannot continue making my business run," Borrell said, adding similar concerns can be heard not only from European leaders, but also from leaders in Africa, South America and Southeast Asia.

As Putin stated in his televised address to the nation on Wednesday, Washington is pushing Kiev towards moving military actions to Russian territory, with "nuclear blackmail" coming into play. As the president explained, the issue is not only about the shelling of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, which risks a nuclear disaster, but also about statements made by certain high-ranking representatives of leading NATO states on the possibility and acceptability of using weapons of mass destruction, namely nuclear weapons against Russia.

"I would like to remind those resorting to such statements against Russia that our country also has various weapons of destruction, and some [of our] components are even more up-to-date than those of NATO member countries. And when the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, we will obviously use all the means we have at our disposal to protect Russia and our people," he warned adding "This is not a bluff.".