Vladimir Putin's threat to target allies unacceptable

The Pentagon recently mentioned Russia's work on two of those weapons: the underwater drone with intercontinental range and a hypersonic "glide vehicle", which is a weapon that Washington and Beijing also are working on.

During an address to lawmakers at Russia's Federal Assembly on Thursday, Putin showcased an array of new nuclear weapons that can't be shot down by anti-missile systems. "You listen to us now".

"You see, all my ancestors in the past were peasant serfs, while I am the president", Russian state-run news agency TASS quoted Putin as saying. "One animation showed warheads raining down on Florida".

Numerous entries Friday reflected the wry dark humor Russians are known for.

The interview also came after Putin had boasted about a new Russian weapon that could evade a US-built missile defence system.

Discussing Syria in a phone conversation, Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.S. President Donald Trump called for an immediate and full implementation of the United Nations cease-fire, her spokesman said on Friday.

"It's unfortunate that Mr Putin chose to include Tampa Bay in his threat but at this point we'll write it off as overheated rhetoric created to prop up his failing regime", he said.

Also Friday, Russia's RIA news agency reported Moscow has delayed planned talks with the USA, set to focus on strategic stability.

When asked about the US missile defense system, she said that defense has never been about Russian Federation.

Mr Putin said on Thursday that Moscow has tested an array of new strategic nuclear weapons that can not be intercepted, and told the West: "You have failed to contain Russian Federation". The president has come under sharp criticism for not implementing further sanctions against Russian intelligence and military enacted by Congress a year ago.

The Kremlin considers sanctions against Russian Federation over the situation in Ukraine that Washington extended for one more year as unlawful, Russia's RIA state news agency quoted the Kremlin spokesman as saying on Saturday. When Putin claims that the USA restarted an arms race by building defenses against smaller states, he's being disingenuous - but certainly in a beneficial way for his political career back home. "You have failed to contain Russian Federation".

Putin is standing in March 18 elections that polls indicate he should win easily.

His address was accompanied by videos and computer simulations of the new weapons, shown on giant screens at a conference hall near the Kremlin.

Chillingly he added: 'Russia remained a nuclear power but no one wanted to listen to us.

The Pentagon has not publicly talked about the nuclear-powered cruise missile mentioned by Putin. It is also capable of carrying a 100-megaton nuclear warhead, which Putin said could target coastal targets and warships. Its "very big" operational depth and a speed that is many times faster than any other vessel would make it immune to being intercepted by the enemy, he added.

The documentary was about the Soviet-era R-36 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that was dubbed "Satan" by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

  • Jon Douglas