(SNews) – The head of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has issued a warning that a “major war” with Russia is a “real possibility.”
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg made the comments as the conflict between Russia and Ukraine is now in its 10th month.
He warned the 30 member states of the alliance that the conflict could trigger “a major war between NATO and Russia.”
“I fear that the war in Ukraine will get out of control and spread into a major war between NATO and Russia,” Stoltenberg said during an interview with Norway’s NRK television channel.
“If things go wrong, they can go horribly wrong,” said Stoltenberg, who previously served as Norway’s prime minister.
The NATO chief’s statements come less than a week after three Russian airbases—located deep inside Russian territory—came under attack by drones.
The attacks ended up killing three servicemen, damaging two aircraft, and prompting fears of retaliation by Moscow.
Ukraine has denied responsibility for the attacks.
One of the bases reportedly hosts long-range strategic bombers that can be equipped to carry nuclear warheads.
The following day, a military airfield near the Russian city of Kursk was the target of a similar drone attack that set an oil tanker ablaze.
While Kyiv didn’t claim responsibility for the attacks, they were widely hailed by Ukrainian military officials.
The airbase attacks were immediately preceded by a two-day visit to Kyiv by Victoria Nuland, U.S. undersecretary for political affairs.
The visit by Nuland, a longstanding critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, prompted speculation that Washington had given Kyiv the go-ahead for the attacks.
Such a scenario, however, was quickly denied by U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price.
On December 6, Price asserted to reporters that Washington “neither enables nor encourages” Ukraine to strike targets beyond its borders.
He added that there was no confirmation that the strikes had been carried out by Ukrainian forces.