Rumors that Russian President Vladimir Putin will declare a formal war against Ukraine on Victory Day next week are “nonsense,” Kremlin flack Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday.
“There is no chance of that. It’s nonsense,” Peskov said.
Victory Day, a celebration of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War II, is among Russia’s most important public holidays.
Putin has refused so far to call his massive invasion of neighboring Ukraine a war, despite his instigation of nonstop fighting, bombing and shelling across the country that has left thousands of civilians and soldiers dead.
Last week, British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said that Victory Day might give Putin an opportunity to finally call his “special operation” a war — and in so doing authorize the calling up of more conscripts to continue the fighting.
“I think what he’s going to do is he’s going to move from his ‘special operation’ … and he’s been laying the ground for being able to say ‘Look, this is now a war against Nazis’ and what I need is more people, I need more Russian cannon fodder basically,” Wallace said on Britain’s LBC radio.
Peskov shot that idea down as well Wednesday, saying Putin would not institute a national mobilization.
“It is not true. It is nonsense,” he said again.
With Post wires