Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Joe Biden calls Vladimir Putin’s nuclear deployment plan in Belarus “dangerous”

US President Joe Biden on Tuesday criticized his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin’s decision to deploy nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus, calling it “dangerous” speech.

“It’s a dangerous kind of talk and about it,” Biden told reporters at the White House.

The Kremlin leader announced on Saturday that he would deploy Russia’s nuclear weapons in Belarus, led by authoritarian ally Alexander Lukashenko, one of Russia’s closest allies.

Washington denounced the decision, which comes more than a year after Moscow tried to conquer pro-Western Ukraine, a neighbor of Russia and Belarus.

But US officials say they have seen no sign that Russia is actually moving nuclear weapons.

“They haven’t done it yet,” Biden said.

On judicial reform in Israel

Separately, the US president warned Israel’s government on Tuesday that it “cannot continue” to put its controversial judicial reform on hold, which has sparked months of social protests and criticism among Western allies.

“Like many of Israel’s strongest supporters, I am very concerned… They cannot continue down this path, and I have made that clear,” Biden told reporters during a visit to the state of North Carolina.

“I hope the prime minister (Benjamin Netanyahu) will act in the way that he tries to reach a real compromise, but that remains to be seen,” Biden said, adding that he does not plan to invite the Israeli leader to the White House, but. certainly “not in the short term.”

Back in Washington, Biden reiterated his concern about the situation in Israel, where Netanyahu’s opponents have accused him of undermining democracy as he tries to consolidate his power.

Asked if Israel’s democracy is at a tipping point, a phrase Biden often uses to describe the dangers facing democracy around the world, he said: “I don’t know if they’re at a tipping point, but I think it’s a tough place to be and they have to figure it out.”

And he urged them to stop imposing controversial judicial reform. “I hope they get away with it,” he said.

(In AFP information)

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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