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NATO rejects Putin’s ‘unacceptable’ threats to target allies

March 2, 2018

In this video grab provided by RU-RTR Russian television via AP television on Thursday, March 1, 2018, the Avangard hypersonic vehicle blasts off during a test launch at an undisclosed location in Russia. President Vladimir Putin declared Thursday that Russia has developed a range of new nuclear weapons, claiming they can't be intercepted by enemy. (RU-RTR Russian Television via AP)

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO says Russian President Vladimir Putin’s threat to target its members are unacceptable and that the military alliance will continue using its armed forces to deter aggression.

NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu said Friday that “Russian statements threatening to target allies are unacceptable and counterproductive.”

Putin said Thursday that Moscow has tested an array of new strategic nuclear weapons that can’t be intercepted, telling the West: “You have failed to contain Russia.”

Lungescu said NATO’s missile defense system is built to respond to attacks from outside Europe and North America and not directed against Russia.

Noting Russia’s “aggressive actions” in Ukraine and military buildup around Europe, she said: “NATO is pursuing a twin-track approach to Russia: strong deterrence and defense, combined with meaningful dialogue.”

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