Putin threatens the West that a Russia-NATO conflict would be just one step away from WWIII

Elections in Russia, first results: Putin wins with 87%.

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the West on Monday that a direct conflict between Russia and the US-led NATO military alliance would mean the planet was one step away from World War III, but said no one wanted such a scenario, Reuters reports.
Putin has often warned of the risks of nuclear war, but says he has never felt the need to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine.

French President Emmanuel Macron said last month he could not rule out sending ground troops to Ukraine in the future, with many Western countries distancing themselves from it, while others, particularly in Eastern Europe, expressed support.

Asked by Reuters about Macron’s remarks and the risks and possibility of a conflict between Russia and NATO, Putin answered ironically: “everything is possible in the modern world.”

“It is clear to everyone that this will be one step away from a third world war. I think no one is interested in it anymore,” Putin said after winning the biggest election victory in Russia’s post-Soviet history. 

Putin added, however, that NATO military personnel are already present in Ukraine, saying that Russia has noticed that both English and French are spoken on the battlefield. “There is nothing good about it, first of all for them, because they are dying there and in large numbers,” he said.

According to the Russian Electoral Commission, the Putin obtained 87.97% of the votes after counting 24% of the elections held on Sunday.

The vote was marked by protests, organized at the call of Aleksei Navalnyi’s widow, and dozens of people were detained.

A VTsIOM exit poll gives Putin the winner with 87%, and a FOM exit poll – with 87.8%. Putin’s margin of victory was the best ever, with a score of 76.7% achieved in 2018, the highest ever.

Communist Nikolai Kharitonov came second, as usual, with 4.6-4.7% of the vote according to the two exit polls. Duma Deputy Speaker Vladislav Davankov will win 3.6%-4.2%, according to polls. The nationalist Leonid Slutsky would rank fourth, with 2.5-3%.

Groups of people gathered on Sunday in front of the polling stations in Russia and abroad, including in Bucharest, after Iulia Navalnaia, the widow of Putin’s former opponent Aleksei Navalnyi, called for the organization of a protest on Sunday, in the – the third and last day of the presidential elections in Russia, informs the international press. Russians stood in long queues, some hundreds of meters long, to vote.

Yulia Navalnaya, the widow of Aleksei Navalny, the leader of the Russian opposition to Vladimir Putin, who died in prison, also appeared on Sunday at the Russian embassy in Berlin to vote in the presidential elections in her country and participate in the “Afternoon/Lunch” protest against Putin”.

In the press conference announcing his victory in the presidential election, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that opposition politician Aleksei Navalny was to be released in a prisoner exchange, right before his death, reports dpa.

emmanuel macronFrancenatoNavalnyiPutinRussiarussian president vladimir putinwestWWIIIYulia Navalnaya
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