The Kremlin on Friday said claims that Russia was ready to unleash nuclear war were "unacceptable madness" and part of what it cast as a quasi-war being waged by the West against Russia.

"I consider this absolutely unacceptable madness," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in an interview with a student television station, referring to what he said were "insane accusations" that Russia was ready to start a nuclear war.

Russia and the United States are by far the world's biggest nuclear powers. (Reporting by Dmitry Antonov and Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)