Russia’s Foreign Ministry accused the United States of supporting Ukraine to attack nuclear forces, potentially causing direct conflict between the two powers.

“The United States is essentially waging a full-blown hybrid war against Russia, with the potential for direct military conflict between the two nuclear powers,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on February 8. . “Hybrid war” is a term to refer to the war in all fields such as politics, military, cyberspace in order to gain an advantage over the enemy.

The agency accused the US of “assisting Ukraine in carrying out attacks on Russia’s strategic nuclear forces”, but did not specify which raids.

The Russian Defense Ministry in December 2022 announced that Ukraine used unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to attack the Engels airbase in Saratov province and Dyagilevo in Ryazan province. Both bases are where Russia deploys strategic bombers that can carry nuclear missiles.

Russia's RS-24 Yars intercontinental ballistic missile conducts a military parade at the Alabino range in April 2016.  Photo: RIA Novosti.

Russia’s RS-24 Yars intercontinental ballistic missile conducted a military parade at the Alabino range in April 2016. Photo: RIA Novosti .

The statement was issued by the Russian Foreign Ministry to comment on the status of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) signed with the United States. The US State Department last week informed Congress that “Russia is not in compliance with the New START treaty” by refusing to facilitate inspectors working on its territory. Russia claims this information is false because New START has a clause allowing the suspension of inspection activities.

According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the United States was the first to stop Russian inspectors from doing their work, calling it “an act that creates clear unilateral interests” for Washington and forcing Moscow to take corresponding countermeasures.

Moscow believes that the New START treaty, signed in the early 2010s, is based on the view that Russia and the United States are equal partners, seeking to build trust and improve global security through disarmament. . However, the situation changed after the US announced that its goal was “to make Russia strategic failure”, escalating bilateral tensions.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said that Russia will not make “goodwill gestures” under the New START treaty if the United States does not reconsider its “hostile stance” and abandon its policy of increasing threats to national security. Russian national security.

The US has not commented on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s statement .

The United States on January 31 accused Russia of violating the New START treaty by refusing to conduct inspections on its territory, warning that this “threatens the ability to control nuclear weapons between the two countries”. The US side also called on Russia “to return to compliance with the treaty by allowing inspectors to do their job”.

Russia suspended inspection activities under the New START treaty in August 2022, because the US and its allies imposed travel restrictions on Russian citizens after the outbreak of hostilities in Ukraine.

The New START Treaty entered into force in 2011 and will be renewed for another five years in 2021. The treaty limits the number of strategic nuclear warheads the United States and Russia can deploy and the deployment of missiles and missiles. bombers to transport them.