MI6 boss: UK warned Putin he would pay ‘huge price’ if he invaded Ukraine
The UK and the US sent a warning to Vladimir Putin that he would pay a “huge price” if Russia invaded Ukraine, according to MI6 boss Richard Moore.
Russia this week pulled back more than 100,000 soldiers that were positioned on the Ukraine border after concerns Putin was about to launch an invasion.
In the first ever interview of a current MI6 chief, Moore, whose codename is C, told Times Radio that Russia was warned there would be a stark response to an invasion of Ukraine from the west.
“The Russians are in absolutely no doubt of where the UK stands on this issue,” he said.
“And they are in absolutely no doubt of where the Biden administration stands on this issue, because channels are open.”
Moore said Putin’s posturing on the Ukraine border, which was the biggest military buildup by the country since the Cold War, was to deflect from Russia’s poor economic situation.
The MI6 chief said the recent imprisonment of prominent Putin critic Alexei Navalny was another indication the Russian President was worried about his country’s economic position and how it could threaten his grip on power.
“Russia is an objectively declining power economically and demographically,” he said.
“It is an extremely challenged place. And clearly the treatment of Alexei Navalny as we saw with the thousands of protesters on the streets of well — not just Moscow — of a number of cities shows that there is a deal of disaffection with Mr Putin.”
(c) City AM