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War Games: Russia Issues Stark Warning After NATO's F-16 Jet Transfer Ratchets Up Tensions with NATO

Russia Threatens to Strike West If F-16s Are Based in NATO Land
Source: MEGA

Russia has threatened to strike Western countries if F-16 fighter jets sent to Ukraine are based in NATO territory.

Dec. 12 2023, Published 11:04 a.m. ET

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Russia has issued a stern warning that indicates there is an increased risk of conflict with NATO countries, according to officials.

Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for the Russian foreign ministry, declared that Western countries housing F-16 fighter jets donated to Ukraine could face missile strikes, the Daily Mail reported.

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Zakharova specifically mentioned Poland, Slovakia and Romania as potential locations for the F-16s, emphasizing that such a move would be considered an escalation by NATO, deepening its involvement in the Ukraine conflict.

"There have been many questions asked about the transfer of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine," Zakharova stated, highlighting NATO's continuous arming of Ukraine, according to the outlet.

Zakharova expressed concern that given Ukraine's damaged airfield infrastructure, these American fighters could be based in NATO countries, further entangling the alliance in the conflict.

The Russian warning extended beyond conventional warfare, with an alarming assertion that the world is closer to a nuclear conflict than at any time since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962.

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This statement follows Poland's warning that Russia could potentially attack NATO nations within the next three years.

Jack Siewiera, head of Poland's national security agency, urged NATO countries on the eastern flank to prepare for confrontation within a three-year timeframe. He emphasized the need to enhance defensive capabilities, proposing an increase in the number of Polish troops to deter potential aggression from Russia.

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The backdrop of this tension involves the approval by the United States for the shipment of F-16s from Denmark and the Netherlands to Ukraine, aimed at bolstering Kyiv's defenses against Russia.

This move drew criticism from Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko in May, who warned Western countries of "colossal risks" associated with supplying F-16s to Ukraine, Al Jazeera reported.

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Earlier indications of strained relations between NATO and Russia were highlighted by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, who expressed skepticism about any improvement in relations. Ryabkov accused NATO of meddling in Russia's interests and cautioned against supporting Ukraine during the ongoing conflict.

Television host and Putin ally, Vladimir Solovyov, added to the rhetoric by suggesting an imminent world war. Solovyov predicted substantial geopolitical changes, questioning the survival of European borders in their current configuration.

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