Speculation about the likelihood of Russia using tactical nuclear weapons (TNWs) in Ukraine has been going on since the start of a special military operation (SMO) in February 2022. As of late October 2022, the intensity of such speculation has been steadily increasing in both the Western and Russian media. There is a possibility that American, European and Ukrainian officials, politicians and experts accuse the Russian Federation of preparing to use TNWs not only for anti-Russian propaganda purposes, but also as part of information and psychological preparation for provocations, including the use of fissile materials.
In connection with Russia's special military operation in Ukraine, a number of American and European experts and officials have repeatedly expressed concerns that the Russian armed forces could hypothetically or even intentionally use chemical weapons. IMEMO specialists decided to analyze the dynamics of Russia’s fulfillment of obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and determine what real grounds American and European experts, and even more so officials, could have for such serious accusations and suspicions.