President Vladimir Putin warned of a resolute response if the U.S. decides to station missiles in neighboring countries to Russia.
Putin, at his annual address to parliament on Wednesday, said his country would not seek confrontation and would not take the first step in deploying missiles after the suspension of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.
However, he said Russia would respond to any deployment of new intermediate-range missiles in Europe by targeting the United States itself and not just the countries were they were held, according to a Reuters translation. He said he would field new weapons that would target U.S. decision-making centers.
He warned U.S. policymakers, some of whom he said were obsessed with U.S. exceptionalism, about being careful before taking new measures.
“It’s their right to think how they want. But can they count? I’m sure they can. Let them count the speed and the range of the weapons systems we are developing,” Putin said to applause, according to Reuters.