KYIV, Sept 21 (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday ordered Russia's first mobilisation since World War Two, warning the West that if it continued what he called its "nuclear blackmail" that Moscow would respond with the might of all its vast arsenal.
"If the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, we will use all available means to protect our people - this is not a bluff," Putin said in a televised address to the nation, adding Russia had "lots of weapons to reply".
Russia's defence minister said the partial mobilisation will see 300,000 reserves called and up would apply to those with previous military experience.
Putin's partial mobilisation significantly escalates the conflict over Ukraine and comes as Russia battles a Ukrainian counter-offensive that has forced its troops to retreat and surrender some occupied territory.
Putin said the partial military mobilisation of its 2 million-strong military reserves was to defend Russia and its territories, claiming the West did not want peace in Ukraine.