Russia’s best-known propagandist has threatened to break up the United Kingdom and “nuke” England, while sparing Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Vladimir Solovyov, a Russian state television host who gained notoriety in recent years for openly urging the government to attack Europe, zeroed in on the UK as he mocked Sir Tony Radakin, chief of the British Armed Forces, for suggesting that Russia would be posing a threat to the world for the next decade.
In a news show on Tuesday, he derided the admiral for criticising Russia while having what he said was an unremarkable military record.
“Who did you beat and where, Admiral? They have completely lost their minds … and now they’re lecturing us, the country (we can destroy with) one Sarmat,” said Mr Solovyov.
Mr Solovyov, whose luxury properties near Lake Como were confiscated by the Italian government shortly after the Russian invasion, in April suggested that Moscow could wipe out the UK with just one Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile.
Video: PM warns Putin will find new targets (Sky News)
The UK has been a recurrent target of Russian propagandists’ ire for being at the forefront of relief efforts for Ukraine.
Mr Solovyov, however, suggested on Rossiya 1 that Russia would not want to hurt Scotland or Wales if it decided to strike the British Isles. “We won’t touch Scotland: Scotland will be independent,” he said.
In an apparent reference to Joe Biden’s remarks last week, in which he compared the plight of Palestinians in the West Bank to the hardships of Irish Catholics under the British rule, Mr Solovyov said: “Wales has been quiet so far. Wales, too, will be independent. And at Biden’s request, Northern Ireland will unite with Ireland.”
Russia’s foreign ministry earlier this month summoned the British ambassador to Moscow over what it described as “unacceptable insulting rhetoric” after Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, suggested that Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, would not have invaded Ukraine if he were a woman.