A picture taken on November 20, 2019 shows NATO flags at the NATO headquarters in Brussels.InternationalIndiaAfricaWASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Nations joining the NATO bloc will face increased security risks, including nuclear, Russian Ambassador to Canada Oleg Stepanov told Sputnik on Thursday. “For as soon as anyone joins the bloc that declared itself nuclear and adversarial to Russia, such a decision entails, besides perceived benefits, all the risks associated with the membership,” Stepanov stated.”Once again, just to be clear: when you are not in the nuclear bloc, you are safe. When you join it, you become yet another target. We cannot believe that the alliance, including our Finnish neighbors, does not understand this truism. It’s as plain as day.” Stepanov stressed this is not a threatening or belligerent position on the part of Russia, it’s just business. “Military one in this case,” he added. “Certainly, it’s up to the constituents of Finland, Sweden and other nations aspiring to join NATO to decide. Just keep in mind: the closer you are to the big guys with the big guns, the more you will have to play by their rules. It would be naïve to hope that you will not be injured in the O.K. Corral gunfight even if you do not have a gun (the nukes, in this case).” Finland became the 31st NATO member on April 4, after its bid was finally ratified by all members of the alliance. Stepanov noted that Canada was the first not only to ratify the Washington Treaty, but also to extend its support for Finland’s application. Stepanov went on to say the bloc was formed for Washington “to dominate large swaths of European land to service American interests.” Stepanov also pointed out that while the CBC article published on April 7 alleged that the Russian Embassy in Ottawa was nuclear sabre-rattling amid Finland’s NATO accession, the mission’s message was a factual statement based on further assumptions. WorldRussia Facing Off Against a NATO-backed ‘Orchestra of Terrorists’, Nicaragua’s Ortega Says13:50 GMT”During the Cold War, the alliance used to be an institution countering the USSR and the Warsaw Pact. But long after the dissolution of the Pact and the Soviet Union, the NATO is still alive and kicking,” the envoy said. “And has always been very transparent about its main adversary – USSR then, Russia now.” “In addition, with the nowadays’ Chinese variable in the security equation, NATO is projecting its reach beyond the territory of its European members, probing of expanding further to the Asia Pacific and elsewhere,” he added. “This is a dangerous game.” Stepanov underscored that NATO’s key strategic documents and latest summits declared it will continue being a “nuclear alliance” so long as the organization and nuclear weapons exist. The Russian envoy also pointed out that the United States has stationed nuclear bombs in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey, while consecutive American administrations during strategic stability talks with Russia have refused to even discuss the possibility of withdrawing US tactical nukes back to its national territory. Stepanov continued to say that Washington has been surveying the Eastern European theatre for decades, and thus “bluntly” violated the letter and spirit of the Non-Proliferation Treaty by training crews from non-nuclear European nations to employ nuclear weapons against Russia while also enlarging the officially declared nuclear alliance directly to the Russian borders.