Putin Blasts US 'Hegemony' 08/16 06:02

Putin Blasts US 'Hegemony'             08/16 06:02

   Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the United States of trying to 
encourage extended hostilities in Ukraine as part of what he described Tuesday 
as Washington's alleged efforts to maintain its global hegemony.

   MOSCOW (AP) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the United States of 
trying to encourage extended hostilities in Ukraine as part of what he 
described Tuesday as Washington's alleged efforts to maintain its global 
hegemony.

   Addressing a security conference attended by military officials from 
Africa,, Asia and Latin America, Putin reaffirmed his long-held claim that he 
sent troops into Ukraine in response to Washington turning the country into an 
"anti-Russia" bulwark.

   "They need conflicts to retain their hegemony," Putin charged. "That's why 
they have turned the Ukrainian people into cannon fodder. The situation in 
Ukraine shows that the United States is trying to drag the conflict out, and it 
acts in exactly the same way trying to fuel conflicts in Asia, Africa and Latin 
America."

   The speech represented the latest attempt by the Russian leader to rally 
support amid bruising Western sanctions that targeted the Russian economy and 
finance along with its government structures, top officials and businesses for 
Moscow's action in Ukraine.

   Putin also drew parallels between the U.S. backing Ukraine and a recent 
visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, charging that both were 
part of an alleged American attempt to foment global instability.

   "The American adventure in Taiwan wasn't just a trip by an irresponsible 
politician. It was part of a deliberate and conscious U.S. strategy intended to 
destabilize the situation and create chaos in the region and the entire world, 
a blatant demonstration of disrespect for another country' sovereignty and its 
own international obligations," Putin said.

   The Russian leader claimed that "Western globalist elites" were trying "to 
shift the blame for their own failures to Russia and China," adding that "no 
matter how hard the beneficiaries of the current globalist model try to cling 
to it, it's doomed."

   "The era of the unipolar world order is nearing its end," he added.

   Speaking at the same conference, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu 
charged that along with supplies of weapons to Ukraine, Western allies also 
have provided detailed intelligence information and deployed instructors to 
help the Ukrainian military operate the weapons systems.

   "Western intelligence agencies not only have provided target coordinates for 
launching strikes, but Western specialists also have overseen the input of 
those data into weapons systems," Shoigu said.

   He dismissed allegations that Russia could potentially use nuclear or 
chemical weapons in the conflict as an "absolute lie."

   "From the military viewpoint, there is no need for using nuclear weapons in 
Ukraine to achieve the stated goals," Shoigu said. "The main mission of the 
Russian nuclear forces is providing a deterrent against a nuclear attack."

   Shoigu added that the claims of a possible chemical attack by Russia were 
equally "absurd," saying that Moscow fully liquidated its chemical weapons 
stockpiles in compliance with an international treaty banning chemical weapons.

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