NewsPutin addresses military operations and election amid tensions

Putin addresses military operations and election amid tensions

Putin's first words after the announcement of the results
Putin's first words after the announcement of the results
Images source: © Licensor

2:55 PM EDT, March 18, 2024

Russian leader Vladimir Putin was seen at the Central Election Commission's headquarters, where he made his first address. "We need to address the issues of special operations, enhance our defensive capabilities, and fortify our armed forces," Putin stated. He also mentioned the recent capture of Avdiivka in the Donetsk region by Russian forces and the assaults on border areas.

Take note: many reports from Russian media or government officials are considered propaganda. These reports contribute to the information war led by the Russian Federation.

"The high election turnout is linked to the significant events our country is facing," remarked Putin. Upon his arrival at the Central Election Commission's headquarters, he was met with applause and chants of "Russia, Russia".

Putin on the war in Ukraine

After expressing gratitude to the Russian populace for their participation in the vote, Putin shifted to military topics. "All planned development strategies for Russia will be addressed, and objectives will be met. We are, in essence, compelled to defend our citizens' interests by taking up arms," he elucidated.

Putin highlighted the importance of "caring for" the inhabitants of Avdiivka in the Donetsk region of Ukraine, a territory seized by Russian forces before the elections.

Discussing the challenges of his newly won term, which was secured amid controversy, he stated, "Russia will tackle the issues of special operations, bolster defense capacities, and armed forces."

Putin also touched on the ongoing airstrikes on border regions since March 12th. The attacks on the Belgorod and Kursk regions are conducted by the "Freedom of Russia" Legion, Siberian Battalion, and the Russian Volunteer Corps - groups of Russians fighting alongside Ukraine.

"All law enforcement bodies will be mandated to identify anyone taking arms against Russia," Putin declared. He noted that the Russian Volunteer Corps includes 2,500 fighters, who he described as being "sacrifically deployed in assaults on the state border."

The leader also addressed incidents of ballot damage during the elections. "Tampering with ballots is punishable. Law enforcement will proceed as per the law. Sabotaging the efforts of those fulfilling their civil duty is undemocratic," he stated forcefully.

Putin on the death of Navalny

For the first time, Putin commented on the demise of Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny.

"Yes, his death is a regrettable occurrence. We've seen other individuals pass away. Has this not occurred in the USA? There was a proposal to exchange Navalny for detainees in Western countries. I was in agreement, preferring the exchange to prevent his return, but unfortunately, death occurs; such is life," he openly remarked.

Navalny's associates responded to Putin's words.

"What a cynical, dishonest disgrace. Absolutely unthinkable."

Putin on conflict with NATO

Putin also spoke on the potential for conflict with NATO. "In today's environment, anything can happen. This would bring us on the verge of a full-scale World War III, a prospect that very few would welcome," he observed.

When questioned about the prospect of occupying the Kharkiv region in response to attacks on the Russian Federation's border areas, Putin noted, "I do not dismiss the idea that we might need to establish a certain sanitary zone in the territory controlled by Kyiv's regime," he mentioned.

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