Six ways Vladimir Putin has gone rogue – and is a threat to the world

Russia: US condemns ‘reckless’ missile test

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Vladimir Putin has long been considered a threat to the world and particularly western forces. Russia has issued a chilling warning to the world this week, claiming tensions with the West have reached a “boiling point”. Military experts and leaders have warned the threat of a new war is drawing closer and becoming increasingly likely. Express.co.uk has compiled a guide to explain the top six ways Mr Putin has gone rogue and become a global threat.

Poland-Belarus migrant crisis

Thousands of migrants are currently stranded in subzero temperatures at the Poland-Belarus border.

The Russian President has offered to help resolve the migrant crisis.

According to RIA news agency, on Sunday Mr Putin told a state TV channel: “We are ready to help it by all means if of course anything would depend on us.”

Russia is a key ally of Belarus, which the European Union claims is responsible for flying in thousands of migrants and attempting to push them across the Poland border illegally.

Moscow denies involvement in this and Mr Putin blamed the West for the crisis.

The Belarus leader Alexander Lukashenko has said he may ask Mr Putin “to get involved” as the migrant crisis escalates.

Belarus has been accused of pushing migrants to the border in a bid to destabilise the EU – a charge the nation and its leader denies.

EU-Belarus relations have been severely strained since Mr Lukashenko declared victory in a discredited presidential election last year and tried to silence dissent by cracking down on mass protests and arresting political opponents.

On Tuesday, Polish authorities used water cannon and other means to keep thousands of increasingly frustrated migrants massed along the frontier.

There were chaotic scenes as a group of migrants charged the fence.

Last week, Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawicki said the Belarus leader is orchestrating the crisis, but “it has its mastermind in Moscow”.

Ukraine

The migrant crisis is taking place at the same time as Russia has indicated it is plotting an invasion of Ukraine.

Tensions between Ukraine and Russia have worsened in recent years ever since Moscow annexed the Crimean Peninsula in 2014.

Ukraine has alleged that Russian troops and equipment have remained at the border since Russia held war games in the area earlier in 2021.

In response, French President Emmanuel Macron made an explosive claim saying France was ready to defend Ukraine’s “territorial integrity”.

In a lengthy phone call with his Russian counterpart, Mr Macron expressed “our deep concern and our willingness to defend the territorial integrity of Ukraine,” according to the French president’s office.

Gas supply

Russia has been a dominant force when it comes to the energy crisis.

Europe’s main energy supplier is Russia (40 percent coming from the nation) which means the continent is at Moscow’s mercy when it comes to this sector.

Mr Putin made various jokes at the EU’s expense for dropping its long-term gas contracts with Russia.

Last month, he also said he could help by sending the EU the extra gas it needs if regulators would only approve of his Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

Wholesale gas prices in the EU and UK today rose by 17 percent after Germany’s energy regulator suspended approval of the controversial Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline from Russia to Germany.

The pipeline needs to be compliant with German law before it can be approved, the regulator said.

Critics fear the pipeline will increase Europe’s energy dependence on Russia – meaning Mr Putin holds even more power when it comes to this sector.

Many political leaders have warned Mr Putin against using the pipeline as a weapon and advised against sanctions in case it prompts the Russian leader to act in this way.

The outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel said sanctions could be used against Moscow under an agreement between Germany and the USA, if gas was “used as a weapon”.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky also said the project could be used as a “geopolitical weapon of the Kremlin” which he said would be “dangerous for all of Europe”.

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Russia-US relations

Russia and the USA are arguably two of the most important, critical and strategic nations in the world.

The relationship between these global superpowers has massive significance for the rest of the world.

The Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told Russian news agency TASS on Monday he sees no signs of a thaw in relations between Moscow and Washington.

The senior diplomat said recent interactions between the nations has indicated there is unlikely to be a calming of tensions.

He told TASS: “It fits well into the declared ideologeme about the double approach to Russia, which combines containment and involvement into a dialogue at the same time.

“But this dialogue never helps find solutions to real problems.

“That is why I see no sign of a thaw at all.

“We are not in a state of permafrost thaw but rather in a state of its expansion, contrary to declarations heard from Washington from time to time.”

Russia and the USA have the first and second-largest nuclear weapon stockpiles in the world which mean they have great arsenals at their disposal.

Vladimir Putin and Moscow have long been understood to be intense adversaries of the United States.

The global order is stronger if Russia is fiercely committed to liberal democracy, but it has proved time and time again that is not the case.

Instead, the nation has consistently preyed upon Nato tensions and is looking to expand the Russian occupation of Ukraine and the Balkans.

Nuclear weapons

Russia currently has around 6,400 nuclear weapons at its disposal.

More than half of the world’s 14,000 nuclear weapons are owned by Russia.

This means Russia holds huge power when it comes to its nuclear arsenal.

In the past few years, President Vladimir Putin does seem to be after nuclear weapons for another reason—to show that Russia is still a great power to be reckoned with.

European and NATO allies are very concerned about Russian efforts to modernise its nuclear weaponry because the weapons could pose a greater threat to these countries.

Russia in space

Russia conducted a strike against a Soviet-era satellite in space on Monday, creating more than 1,500 pieces of debris that US officials said pose a reckless risk and show Moscow’s insincerity when it said it does not want to weaponise space.

The test marks the first time Moscow has demonstrated its ability to strike a satellite using a missile from Earth.

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson told The Washington Post: “It’s inexplicable that they would do this and threaten not only our astronauts after we’ve cooperated in space since 1975, but threaten their own cosmonauts.”

Mr Nelson added the debris could do “serious damage” to the station and he was “quite concerned” about the safety of astronauts.

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