The Russian military officer ’who saved the world’ has died

Stanislav Petrov, a former Soviet military officer known in the West as "the man who saved the world" for his role in averting a nuclear war, has died at the age of 77.

Mr Petrov’s German friend, Karl Schumacher, said on Tuesday that he died in May.

Mr Schumacher called Mr Petrov earlier this month to wish him a happy birthday, but was told by Mr Petrov’s son that his father had died.

Mr Petrov’s son also confirmed the death to the Russian state Zvezda TV station on Tuesday.

Mr Petrov was on duty at the Soviet military’s early warning facility on September 26 1983, when an alarm went off, signalling the launch of US intercontinental ballistic missiles.

The 44-year-old officer had to determine within seconds whether the attack was real.

He decided to consider it a false alarm, which it was.

AP


KEYWORDS: Nuclear war

 

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