Feb 21, 2019 16:59 Asia/Tehran

Russian President said that Moscow is ready for a Cuban Missile-style crisis if the US is foolish enough to want one.

Iran Press/Europe: Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that Moscow is militarily ready for a Cuban Missile-style crisis if the United States is foolish enough to want one and that his country currently has the edge when it comes to a first nuclear strike.

Putin’s comments made to Russian media late on Wednesday, follow his warning that Moscow will match any US move to deploy new missiles closer to Russia by stationing its own missiles closer to the United States or by deploying faster missiles or both, Reuters reported.

Putin fleshed out his warning in detail for the first time, saying Russia could deploy hypersonic missiles on ships and submarines which could lurk outside US territorial waters if Washington now moved to deploy intermediate-range nuclear weapons in Europe.

On Feb. 20, President Vladimir Putin warned that Russia will respond to any deployment of intermediate-range nuclear weapons in Europe by targeting not only the countries where those missiles are stationed, but the United States itself.

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We'll target US if Washington deploys missiles in Europe: Putin warns

(We’re talking about) naval delivery vehicles: submarines or surface ships. And we can put them, given the speed and range (of our missiles) in neutral waters. Plus they are not stationary, they move and they will have to find them, Putin said, according to a Kremlin transcript.

You work it out. Mach nine (the speed of the missiles) and over 1,000 km (their range), Russian President concluded.

Russian President Vladimir Putin

Putin has said he does not want an arms race with the United States, but that he would have no choice but to act if Washington deployed new missiles in Europe, some of which he says would be able to strike Moscow within 10-12 minutes.

Russian President said his naval response to such a move would mean Russia could strike the United States faster than US missiles deployed in Europe could hit Moscow because the flight time would be shorter.

It (the calculation) would not be in their favor, at least as things stand today. That’s for sure, said Putin.

Relations between Moscow and Washington were strained, he added, but the tensions were not comparable to those of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The tensions are not the reason to ratchet up confrontation to the levels of the Cuban Missile Crisis in the 1960s. In any case that’s not what we want, said Putin. If someone wants that, well OK they are welcome. I have set out today what that would mean. Let them count (the missile flight times), Russian President concluded.

The Cuban Missile Crisis erupted in 1962 when Moscow responded to a US missile deployment in Turkey by sending ballistic missiles to Cuba, sparking a standoff that brought the world to the brink of nuclear war.

More than five decades on, tensions are rising again over Russian fears that the United States might deploy intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Europe as a landmark Cold war-era arms control treaty unravels.

Russian President Vladimir Putin had said that if the US decided to suspend the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), Moscow would retaliate, the Kremlin stated on Feb. 02.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced recently that the US is suspending the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, a key pact with Russia that has been a centerpiece of European security since the Cold War. 105/201/213

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