UK's Johnson warns of downside to ending Ukraine conflict
The West needs to keep arming Ukraine instead of seeking a peaceful resolution to the conflict between Kiev and Moscow, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told French President Emmanuel Macron, according to Downing Street. Any attempt to resolve the conflict peacefully will lead to global instability, he said at a meeting on the sidelines of the G7 Summit on Sunday.
The military action in Ukraine is at a “critical moment,” the two leaders agreed, but there is still “an opportunity to turn the tide.” According to the statement, Johnson and Macron have agreed to continue supporting Kiev militarily to “strengthen their hand in both the war and any future negotiations.”
The prime minister also cautioned the French leader against seeking alternatives to resolving the conflict.
The Prime Minister stressed any attempt to settle the conflict now will only cause enduring instability and give Putin licence to manipulate both sovereign countries and international markets in perpetuity.
Johnson took a similar stance at a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Sunday. “Ukraine is on a knife-edge and we need to tip the balance of the war in their favor. That means providing Ukraine with the defensive capabilities, training and intelligence they need to repel the Russian advance,” a statement from Downing Street read.
On Sunday, Johnson tweeted that Ukraine’s “security is our security, and their freedom is our freedom.”
Now is not the time to give up on Ukraine, they need the support and resolve of the @G7 more than ever. The UK will continue to back Ukraine every step of the way, because we know that their security is our security, and their freedom is our freedom. pic.twitter.com/hXJ4jhCN1I— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) June 26, 2022
Ahead of the summit, London pledged an additional £429 million ($525 million) in guarantees for World Bank loans in 2022 as a form of financial assistance to Kiev. According to Downing Street, the UK’s total financial support for Ukraine, including loan guarantees, amounted to £1.3 billion ($1.5 billion) and the combined UK economic and humanitarian support for Ukraine amounted to £1.5 billion ($1.8 billion) this year.
Johnson has been one of Kiev’s most ardent supporters after Russia’s military operation in Ukraine began in late February. He has visited Kiev twice since then and repeatedly called on Western nations to provide more weapons. The UK is one of Kiev’s major arms suppliers, including heavy weaponry.
In June, Johnson warned that the West must brace for a long war between Kiev and Moscow. On Saturday, he said he would consider resigning if he has to abandon Ukraine at some point.