Vladimir Putin’s chilling response after being confronted over war crimes

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Vladimir Putin met with a European leader for the first time since he launched an invasion of Ukraine and issued a chilling rebuke of Western criticism of his regime's war crimes.

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer met with President Putin in Moscow last week, however the Chancellor told NBC News that “it was not a friendly conversation”.

Chancellor Nehammer had visited Bucha in Ukraine, the site of a disturbing massacre after a Russian retreat where more than 350 bodies were found, some of which showed evidence of torture under Russian occupation.

Days later, he travelled to Russia where he wanted "to confront President Putin" about what he saw in Ukraine.

He addressed the “massive loss of the Russian army” in its war against Ukraine with Putin, but the leaders response was disturbing.

Chancellor Nehammer told NBC News that “it was not a friendly conversation". He added: "I told him what I saw. I saw the war crimes. I saw the massive loss of the Russian army.

"And I told him that there is a need for humanitarian corridors for cities like Mariupol or Kharkiv, for example.

"Civilians need water and we need to take care of the wounded there."

Recalling Putin's terrifying response, Nehammer said: "He told me he will cooperate with an international investigation, on the one hand.

"And on the other hand, he told me that he doesn't trust the Western world. This will be the problem now in the future."

Later in the interview, he revealed that President Putin believes he is winning the war, noting that the Russian leader was “in his own war logic” on Ukraine.

The Austrian leader added: "We have to look in his eyes and we have to confront him with that, what we see in Ukraine."

He echoed recent concerns from the CIA director that President Putin could turn to nuclear weapons to get his way in Ukraine.

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Chancellor Nehammer said: “He knows that he has this weapon. And he knows the threat of this weapon. So I don’t know if he’d really use it.”

The latest UK government intelligence briefing today said Russia "plans to renew its offensive activity throughout the east of the country".

This comes as Russia issued a deadline today for Ukrainian soldiers to lay down their arms in Mariupol, which has been under siege for weeks.

Earlier, Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky said killing Ukrainian fighters in Mariupol would put an end to any peace talks.

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