'Russia must be ready for large-scale conflict'
Moscow: Russia's military must prepare for the kind of large-scale conflict that seemed improbable immediately after the Cold War ended, a top Russian security official said on Thursday.
"In 1993, we said that military conflicts have been ruled out, but life has shown this is not the case," Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Russia's National Security Council, was quoted as saying by news agencies.
"There have been regional and local conflicts, and we cannot rule out large-scale conflicts and we need to be ready for this," Patrushev told reporters after a meeting in Saint Petersburg.
Patrushev made the comments while discussing a new version of Russia's military doctrine, the main strategic planning document for the country's armed forces, which officials have been drafting in recent months.
The current doctrine dates to 2000 and the previous version before that was from 1993, when the collapse of Communism seemed to usher in an age of peaceful relations between Moscow and its former Cold War foe Washington.
Last week, Patrushev said the new doctrine would allow Russia to carry out a "preventative" nuclear strike against would-be aggressors, a loosening of Moscow's current policy on the use of atomic weapons.
`Russia must be ready for large-scale conflict`