Three nations set to join anti-Russia security pact – Ukraine
With fears that Russia could invade Ukraine still looming large in the West, Britain and Poland will join forces with Kiev to boost cooperation in the region and deter Moscow from any potential aggression, the leaders of the two eastern European nations in the pact have announced.
Speaking at a press conference in Kiev on Tuesday, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmygal shared his optimism at the prospect of the new collaboration between the three states.
“I hope that in the near future we will be able to officially launch a new regional format of cooperation Ukraine-Poland-UK,” he said. “In the context of ongoing Russian aggression, we should sign a trilateral document on cooperation to strengthen regional security.”
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that Warsaw would offer assistance to the former Soviet Republic with gas and arms supplies, as well as economic and humanitarian aid. According to him, “living close to a neighbor like Russia we have the feeling of living at the foot of a volcano.”
The official also said foreign ministers were “working on a potential format that could tighten cooperation on various fields between Poland, Ukraine, and Britain.”
Kiev’s top diplomat, Dmitry Kuleba, wrote in a statement that the first official unveiling of the new format was planned to be made on Wednesday as part of UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss’ visit to Ukraine. Due to her contracting Covid-19, though, Kuleba said that “we are postponing this announcement until later.”
He vowed, however, that the parties will “not sit back idly and will continue to hone the new” cooperation. According to him, the new alliance will not be tied to “local geography.” Rather, it will become a unification of nations that share common principles and seek to strengthen security, as well as develop trade.
The development of new cooperation between the three countries comes amid heightened tensions in eastern Europe, with several Western leaders raising the alarm repeatedly in recent months that Moscow’s troops could invade Ukraine.
However, the Kremlin has repeatedly rejected claims in English language media outlets that the country’s armed forces are planning to wage an offensive, with Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov calling such claims “groundless.”
Last week, the Ukrainian parliament ratified a loan agreement with London to secure more than $2 billion in funds for the construction of missile boats and the modernization of its current fleet.