Austin warns Russian conflict on Ukraine might result in a 'harmful spiral of nuclear proliferation'

Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin warned on Saturday that Russia’s conflict in Ukraine might result in a “harmful spiral of nuclear proliferation” elsewhere on the earth.

“Russia’s invasion provides a preview of a potential world of tyranny and turmoil that none of us need to reside in,” Austin mentioned on the Halifax Worldwide Safety Discussion board in Canada. “And it’s an invite to an more and more insecure world haunted by the shadow of nuclear proliferation.”

“As a result of [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s fellow autocrats are watching,” he continued. “They usually might effectively conclude that getting nuclear weapons would give them a searching license of their very own.”

Austin famous the ripple results of Russia’s conflict in Ukraine on the Taiwan Strait, the place China has taken “more and more provocative” navy actions. 

Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned final month that China seems to be pursuing unification with Taiwan “on a a lot sooner timeline” than anticipated. Whereas the island has been self-governed for many years, Beijing considers Taiwan to be a part of its territory.

The U.S. has walked a high quality line on the problem, however President Biden lately warned that American forces would defend Taiwan within the case of an assault by China.

Austin additionally famous in his remarks on Saturday that Russia has turned to Iran and North Korea for assist in its conflict in Ukraine, as evidenced by the Iranian-made drones present in Ukraine.

“This sort of irresponsible habits from Iran and the [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] is a severe concern for our allies and companions within the Center East and within the Indo-Pacific,” he added.