TALLINN - Estonian Foreign Affairs Minister Urmas Reinsalu said that Russian President Vladimir Putin justified Russia's brutal war in his speech on Tuesday.
"The Kremlin's leader Putin justified in his speech today the inhuman and cruel war in Ukraine. It is control over the democratic world and robbing states of the right to self-determination that Putin has been after with his year-long aggression," Reinsalu said.
"The message in Putin's speech is unambiguous -- Russia has not abandoned its strategic ambition and continues its war of aggression and genocide. Putin will be stopped by vigorous action by the West and unity in raising the price of the war. We will stand with Ukraine until their victory," he said.
Putin gave a state of the nation address in Moscow, promising to continue hostilities in Ukraine and repel the weapons sent to Russia's borders by the West.
He blamed the West for the escalation in the war in Ukraine, claiming that already before Russia launched its so-called special operation, Kyiv had been in talks with the West over the supply of air defense systems, aircraft and other heavy machinery to Ukraine.
"The responsibility for fueling the Ukrainian conflict, for its escalation, for the number of victims lies completely with Western elites," he said.
According to Putin, Western elites intend to transform the local conflict into a global confrontation. Russia is prepared to respond to that as "it will be a matter of our country's existence."
Putin also accused the West of launching "aggressive information attacks" and taking aim at Russian culture, religion and values because it is aware that "it is impossible to defeat Russia on the battlefield."