NATO Chief Jens Stoltenberg Responds To Putin’s Nuclear Threat

(Photo by JOHN THYS/AFP via Getty Images)

Bryan Babb Contributor
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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stated Tuesday that the alliance would not change its nuclear alert level, even after Russian President Vladimir Putin made nuclear threats.

“We will always do what is needed to protect and defend our allies, but we don’t think there is any need now to change the alert levels of NATO’s nuclear forces,” Stoltenberg told the Associated Press.

Stoltenberg added that Russia was being “reckless and irresponsible” in its threats to use nuclear weapons, the AP reported. He continued, saying that Russia had signed agreements stating nuclear war should be avoided, according to the outlet.

Stoltenberg also called for Putin to cease hostilities in Ukraine and for Russia to “withdraw all its forces” so that “good faith” diplomacy could begin, the AP reported.

While NATO does not have its own nuclear armaments, three countries in the alliance do: Britain, France and the U.S., according to the AP. (RELATED: Putin Told To ‘Kill Himself’ Like Hitler By Ukraine’s UN Ambassador)

Putin announced Sunday that Russia’s nuclear forces would on high alert after the U.S. and other Western countries subjected Russia to economic sanctions. The sanctions on Russia were a response to Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, which kicked off as Putin announced “a special operation in Donbas” early Thursday morning. Moments later reports of explosions came out from the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv as well as near the cities of Kharkov and Dnieper.

Video on Tuesday showed a missile hitting a government building in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv. Ukrainians across the country have taken up arms to repel the Russian forces, with the government supplying ordinary citizens with firearms and equipment.