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Russia to never initiate use of nukes: Kremlin

Moscow, June 4 (IANS) Russia will never initiate the use of nuclear weapons, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said regarding the country”s newly released nuclear deterrence policy.

The policy unveiled on Tuesday specifies the situations that could lead Russia to retaliate for foreign nuclear attacks, Xinhua news agency quoted Peskov as saying at a daily briefing on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on the fundamentals of the country”s state policy of nuclear deterrence.

“The Russian Federation reserves the right to launch a nuclear strike either in response to a similar attack or in the event of a threat to the existence of the state,” the decree reads, stressing that the policy is defensive in nature.

The nuclear deterrence policy was published openly for the first time in the history of the Soviet Union and modern Russia, according to Victor Murakhovsky, editor-in-chief of the Russian magazine Arsenal of the Fatherland.

Russia chose to elaborate on its strategy to use nukes at a time when the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) is due to expire in February 2021 and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty has already collapsed, Murakhovsky said.

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