Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has been accused by the UK of spreading false information regarding a British decision not to send tanks shells containing depleted uranium over to Ukraine.
According to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), such material is considered “standard” for rounds with the ability to penetrate through armor and has nothing to do nuclear weapons.
After Putin had condemned the plan to send such bombs to Ukraine, and warned that he would retaliate.
“If all of this happens, Russia must respond appropriately, given that the West collectively has already begun to use weapons with a nuclear component,” the president stated. He spoke while speaking to his Chinese counterpart President Xi Jinping at a summit in Moscow.
Russia, a nuclear power has used nuclear sabre-rattling to try to stop Western support for Ukraine.
Sergei Shoigu, the defence minister, claimed that the British decision to use shells left less than a possible “nuclear collide” between Russia’s and the West.
In remarks quoted by domestic agencies, he said that “another step has been taken” and that there are “fewer and fewer left”.
In a written reply to a question from the parliamentary committee, a British defense minister provided comments that were used by the Kremlin.
Baroness Annabel, Minister of State for Defence, said that some ammunition Britain sent to Ukraine for the Challenger 2 battle tank tanks includes armour-piercing shots that contain depleted Uranium.
Because of its density, such material can penetrate armour easier than other materials and is often used in weapons.
A spokesperson for the MoD clarified the situation further in a statement published after the Moscow-instigating comments.
“In addition to granting a squadron Challenger 2 main battle tank to Ukraine, we will also be providing ammunition, which includes armour-piercing rounds that contain depleted Uranium. These rounds are extremely effective in defeating modern tanks, armoured vehicles,” said the spokesperson.
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“The British Army used depleted Uranium in its armourpiercing shells for many decades. It is a standard component that has nothing to do nuclear weapons or capabilities. Russia is trying to deceive the world about this, but it knows.
“Independent research from scientists from groups like the Royal Society has determined that the impact of the use depleted-uranium munitions on the environment and personal health is likely to be minimal.”
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The UK doesn’t consider depleted-uranium rounds to be a nuclear capability. Russia also uses uranium-based ammunition.
Former army officer Colonel Hamish de Bretton Gordon dismissed the Russian president’s comments as “absolutely absurd” and “completely incorrect”.
He stated that it was possible to convince President Xi to arm himself and to terrorize the West about his plans to increase nuclear weapons.
Colonel de Bretton Gordon stated that depleted Uranium cannot be used to make nuclear weapons or as a fuel. Putin has used the nuclear escalation cards since the start of the war to keep NATO from being invaded. However, it has not worked.