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6 Sep, 2022 08:18

Kremlin comments on Truss victory

Moscow is skeptical whether the incoming UK prime minister can change relations for the better, Dmitry Peskov says
Kremlin comments on Truss victory

Russia does not expect its relations with the UK to improve after Liz Truss was elected to become the new British prime minister, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday.

To be honest, judging by the statements Ms Truss made on our country when she served as foreign secretary and was [a PM] candidate, one may assume with a high degree of confidence that no changes for the better can be expected,” he told reporters.

Peskov also declined to comment on whether Vladimir Putin intends to congratulate Truss on her victory, saying that it is better to ask the Russian president himself.

On Monday, Liz Truss was elected to lead the Conservative Party and become the UK’s next prime minister following a two-month race against a number of contenders, including former finance minister Rishi Sunak. Truss won by a margin of 57.4% to 42.6%. Her victory came as no surprise as recent polls had shown she enjoyed overwhelming support among Tory members.

As foreign secretary, Truss has been hawkish on Russia, strongly condemning Moscow over its military offensive in Ukraine. During her campaign for Tory leadership, she claimed that she had “stood up to [Russian President] Vladimir Putin by targeting Russia with the toughest sanctions his regime has ever seen.”

In late August, a spokesperson for the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, the ministry Truss was the head of, also suggested that Russia “has no moral right” to attend the G20 summit in Bali scheduled for November due to its “aggression in Ukraine.”

Liz Truss will officially begin her new job after outgoing prime minister, Boris Johnson, visits Queen Elizabeth to submit his resignation on Tuesday. Johnson steps down following a series of high-profile scandals and a wave of resignations of senior cabinet members.