Russian troops hold live fire drills near Ukraine border as WW3 fears grow

Russia has threatened to deploy intermediate range nuclear missiles in Europe, as tension over Ukraine and fears of a possible World War 3 intensify.

A warning from the country's foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov comes along with increasing fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine, where the Kremlin has amassed 175,000 soldiers.

Vladimir Putin has warned of "massive consequences" if he invades Ukraine as Russia puts troops on its neighbour's border.

Ryabkov has threatened to revive the catastrophic Intermediate-range nuclear missiles which were deployed in large numbers by both sides during the Cold War in the early 1980s, The Sun reports.

The minister denied that Russia was planning to invade the Ukraine but said Moscow would "respond militarily" if Nato was to expand eastwards.

Ryabkov said he warned "there will be confrontation, this will be the next step" and previously banned weapons "will appear from our side".

He added: "They don’t exist now, we have a unilateral moratorium."

When the missiles were first deployed, they brought the cities of Europe into much closer striking range, which added an incredibly more dangerous dimension to the nuclear arms race.

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But a historic treaty signed between US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev which led to the two countries destroying over 2,6500 of them.

The US withdrew from the pact in 2019 after years of alleged violations revolving around Russia's development of a ground-launched cruise missile.

It was detected by US intelligence that Russian troops had been detected on the border as Ukraine continues to fear a potential invasion in early 2022.

Rising tensions have prompted the G7 group of Western nations to issue a firm warning to Russia.

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“Russia should be in no doubt that further military aggression against Ukraine would have massive consequences and severe cost in response," the group said in statement.

"We reaffirm our unwavering commitment to Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as the right of any sovereign state to determine its own future."

Ben Wallace,Britain's Defence Secretary, said the UK was ready to use force to help defend Ukraine.

Russia has vehemently denied allegations that it plans to attack Ukraine and condemned the G7 warning.

Its UK embassy said: "Russia has made numerous offers to NATO on ways to decrease tensions.

“The G7 forum could be an opportunity to discuss them, but so far we hear nothing but aggressive slogans.”

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