Russian president, Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, 30th of June while referring to the soaring tensions between Russia and the UK, said that Russia could have easily gotten away with sinking the British warship, HMS Defender, as a response to earlier provocations, without instigating a third world war.
Putin during a question and answer session with the voters, went on to make very strong allegations of the U.S. being complicit in the premeditated 'provocation' by London of the Royal Navy vessel, HMS Defender violating the Russian territorial waters near Crimea in the Black Sea.
Adding to his accusations, the Russian President said that HMS Defender entered Russian waters to gain knowledge of Russia's immediate response and protocol followed against such provocations. Trying to back his claims regarding the involvement of the United States he said, that a U.S. spy plane had left Greece earlier the same day to spy upon the activities that followed the provocation.
But as Putin mentioned in his statement, Russia was able to decipher the aim of the exercise and therefore acted accordingly by firing warning shots and dropping bombs through jet planes in the trajectory of the vessel to force it to return without revealing any official protocol to the 'enemies'.
When asked by an audience member whether a more severe response would have pushed the world off the brink towards the third world war, the Russian president gave a strong response saying, "Even if we had sunk the ship it is hard to imagine that the world would have been on the verge of World War Three because those doing it know that they could not emerge as victors from such a war."
Vladimir Putin's remarks add the concern to the remarks made earlier by a Russian official saying, Russia would bomb any British naval vessels illegally entering its waters. Even though the British defense minister has rejected the occurrence of any such event, Putin's allegations are worrying for the relations between Moscow and London.
Towards the end of the session, Putin so stressed the adverse effect the involvement of the United States in the provocation would have upon his talks with U.S. President Joe Biden in Geneva. He said that despite Russia's gesture for the conduct of peace talks in a viable environment by the pullback of Russian troops from the Ukrainian border the 'provocation' was a sign of disinterest towards such bilateral dialogues.