Vladimir Putin’s foreign minister warned that World War Three “can only be nuclear”.
Sergey Lavrov claimed the West is obsessed with such threats of destruction – and compared the United States to Nazi Germany, the Daily Mail reported.
Lavrov’s comments come a week after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Moscow is believed to have seized Kherson on Thursday – the first major Ukrainian city to fall.
Lavrov said: “It is clear that World War Three can only be nuclear.
“I would like to point out that it’s in the heads of Western politicians that the idea of a nuclear war is spinning constantly, and not in the heads of Russians.
“Therefore I assure you that we will not allow any provocations to throw us off balance.”
Last Sunday, Putin ordered Russia’s nuclear deterrent forces to be put on high alert, saying western countries have been “unfriendly” towards his country following the invasion, in the light of sanctions gradually imposed in protest to Russia’s actions.
US accused of trying to conquer ‘whole of Europe’
Lavrov also accused the US today of trying to have “the whole of Europe” under its control, likening the Americans to Hitler and Napoleon.
He said: “Napoleon and Hitler had the objective to have the whole of Europe under their control, now Americans have got Europe under their control.
“We see that the situation what role the EU is really playing in the context of the global situation, they are just fulfiling a role.”
He added: “We see that there’s a picture like in Hollywood of absolute evil and absolute good and this is unfortunate.
“I think that this hysteria will end and our partners will settle down after a while and we will sit down to negotiate but only on one absolute condition and that is as equal parties.”
The Russian minister insisted Moscow is ready for peace talks as another meeting is held with Ukrainian officials in Belarus today, and that the Kremlin would push ahead with military action towards its neighbour until it “demilitarises”.
This week, former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has also hit out at the West, saying they should “go back to the original agreements” on Ukraine made in Budapest and Minsk, which he said were “designed to bring along a long-term ceasefire”.
But the US and its allies, which include the UK, insisted NATO is a defensive military alliance which poses no threats to Russia.