Russian President, Vladimir Putin has said that nations imposing sanctions on his country were declaring war.
The President warned that any attempt to impose a no-fly zone in Ukraine would lead to catastrophic consequences for the world.
Putin maintained that by invading Ukraine, his aims were simply to defend Russian-speaking communities through the “demilitarisation and de-nazification” of the country.
He said he must ensure that Russia’s former Soviet neighbour became neutral and no longer threatened his country.
“These sanctions that are being imposed are akin to a declaration of war but thank God it has not come to that,” Putin said, speaking to a group of flight attendants at an Aeroflot training centre near Moscow.
The Russian leader warned that any attempt by “another power to impose a no-fly zone in Ukraine would be considered by Russia to be a step into the military conflict.”
He said such a step “would have catastrophic consequences for Europe and the world.”
Speaking further, President Putin maintained that the invasion of Ukraine was going as planned.
He denied reports that Russian conscripts had been used in Ukraine, saying that none had been involved, insisting that his military is capable of carrying out his targets in Ukraine.
“There is not one conscript and we don’t plan for there to be.
“Our army will fulfil all the tasks. I don’t doubt that at all. Everything is going to plan,” Putin said.