Putin: Russia's weapons export in 2017 exceeded $15 billion

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"This was a signal to the West, the U.S. in particular, that Russia is ready for nuclear isolationism", said Andrei Kortunov, head of the Russian International Affairs Council, a Kremlin-established research group.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that his country would "never" extradite the 13 Russian nationals indicted as part of special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into 2016 election meddling. In 2017 the export of Russian military hardware went up for a third year running to above $15 billion.

"The work on the modern weaponry has taken many years".

According to the President, activity of foreign intelligence against Russian Federation has increased over the last years.

He said he was unaware of who could be behind those people and called on the U.S. to provide reliable evidence that they had done anything wrong.

Putin ordered FSB to continue prevention of espionage activities against Russian Federation in political, economic, technologic and defense areas.

Russians pressured to attend Putin's star-studded election rally
“This weak guy”: in the US shamed the nuclear threat Putin

While Vladimir Putin boasted that his latest "invincible" nuclear weapons prove the U.S. and its allies have failed to contain Russian Federation, the display of bravado risks a new arms race that his country is ill-equipped to win. I think there's lot of political posturing in that sense, Putin also said that now the U.S. must listen to us, must see what our capabilities are, of course, the weapons systems and the display of weapons is important, but the political aspect of Putin's speech, I think, is even more interesting.

The president thanked the leadership and staff of the defense enterprises and all those who work in the sector of military-technical cooperation, for the achieved results.

The Russian president is wrong, of course.

Third countries are exerting "unprecedented and unconcealed" pressure on Russia's partners in military-technical cooperation to remove Russian Federation as a rival and undermine the defense capability of its partners, Putin said.

"Its aim is not only to remove a rival on the global arms market but also to undermine the defense capability of some states and increase their lagging behind in the military sphere", Putin said. "This is a very strong argument for those who want to develop the United States military potential".

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