Vladimir Putin has overseen annual exercises by Russia’s strategic nuclear forces at a time of heightened tensions with the West over his eight-month-long war in Ukraine.

Kremlin said Ballistic and cruise missiles were launched from the Arctic to Russia’s Far East.

U.S was told about the drill under the terms of the New Start arms treaty.

The launches took place as Russia makes unsubstantiated claims that Ukraine was plotting to use a “dirty bomb”.

Kyiv warned the claims indicate Moscow itself could be preparing such an attack.

The last Russian nuclear drill took place five days before it invaded Ukraine.

Ahead of the latest exercise, military officials in Washington pointed out that, in notifying the US, the Russians were complying with arms control obligations.

Nato is also staging its own nuclear exercises, dubbed Steadfast Noon, in north-western Europe.

Credit: BBC

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