During a March 3 conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron, Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly vowed to continue his deadly assault on Ukraine until he achieves his desired objectives — control of all of the small neighboring country.
“Putin told France’s Macron Russia will ‘continue military interventions and go all the way,’ an Elysee Palace source told reporters,” CNN anchor Jim Sciutto tweeted.
News of Putin’s alleged statement came after Russian troops attacked a Ukrainian nuclear power plant with shelling and started a fire, according to The Associated Press.
That latest development has caused other world leaders to weigh in further about the danger posed not only to Ukraine but other countries if nuclear radiation is released. Among them was Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, who has been in contact with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
“Continued dialogue with PM @kishida230. Informed about Russia’s nuclear terrorism at the Zaporizhzhia #NPP. We both agree on the gravity of threats to global security. Thanked 🇯🇵 for the diverse assistance to [Ukraine flag emoji] & the sanctions pressure on RF. Together we oppose the aggressor,” Zelenskyy tweeted early Friday morning.
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Kishida also tweeted about the conversation and said Japan would be providing Ukraine with bulletproof vests and helmets.
“Today I had a discussion with President Zelensky (@ZelenskyyUa) of Ukraine over the telephone. I conveyed to Mr. Zelensky that the recent assault on the nuclear power plant is an outrage that cannot be tolerated for any reason,” Kishida wrote.
There are reports that the two warring nations were going to meet to discuss a ceasefire, a position which Moscow’s chief negotiator supported. Putin’s reported stance contradicts this position.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also spoke with President Zelenskyy early Friday morning.
“The Prime Minister said the reckless actions of (Russian President Vladimir) Putin could now directly threaten the safety of all of Europe,” Johnson’s office said in a statement. “He said (the United Kingdom) would do everything it could to ensure the situation did not deteriorate further.”
Putin has put his army on high nuclear alert, causing many Europeans to panic-buy iodine in hopes it will protect them from radiation poisoning, Business Insider reported.
European officials, however, said iodine would not be helpful in a nuclear war.
“The current situation in Ukraine does not require taking tablets of iodine,” the Federal Agency for Nuclear Control tweeted. “Only take iodine on the recommendation of the authorities.”
IN THE ORIGINAL PHOTOS: In this May 9, 2014 file photo, Russian President Vladimir Putin heads to speak at a navy parade marking Victory Day in Sevastopol, Crimea. Angry with the West’s response over Ukraine, Russia is moving rapidly to bolster ties with North Korea in a diplomatic nose-thumbing that could complicate the U.S.-led effort to squeeze Pyongyang into giving up its nuclear weapons program. Russia’s proactive strategy in Asia- which also involves cozying up to China and had been dubbed “Putin’s Pivot” – began years ago as Moscow’s answer to Washington’s much touted rebalancing of its military forces in the Pacific. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, File) / Image credit: KREMLL/ iStock, https://www.istockphoto.com/portfolio/KREMLL?mediatype=photography