In the Videotaped address to the nation, the Russian President made a covert threat of using nuclear weapons. In his address, he ordered for the mobilization of 300,000 reservists. He also warned the West that he isn’t bluffing over using means at his disposal to protect Russia’s territory. “If the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, we will certainly use all means at our disposal to protect Russia and our people”, Putin said.
The associated Press reports that this is “the first mobilization in Russia since World War II and comes amid humiliating battlefield losses for the Kremlin’s forces in recent weeks”.
The mobilization makes it compulsory by law for reservists who are officially called up to report for duty, or face fines or charges.
Authorities who support the Kremlin have declared plans to hold referendums on joining Russia this week. Putin says the Kremlin will support the votes, while Ukraine and its allies have dismissed the move as a “sham”