Ukraine War: UK to send 6,000 defensive missiles to Ukraine to ‘step up’ military support | Political news

Boris Johnson is expected to announce a new military support package for Ukraine on Thursday as he meets NATO and G7 leaders and urges them to “step up” in response to Russian aggression.

Calling on UK allies to ensure Ukrainians have the wherewithal to continue to protect themselves against the Russians of President Vladimir Putin forces, the Prime Minister will pledge 6,000 new defensive missiles and £25m in financial support for Ukraine military personnel.

The measures more than double the lethal defense aid provided to date and come on top of the £400million the UK has committed to humanitarian and economic aid for the crisis so far, said the government.

Live updates as NATO issues nuclear war warning to Moscow

The leaders of G7 and NATO member states will meet for talks in Brussels tomorrow to discuss longer-term military, diplomatic and humanitarian support for Ukraine and how they propose to strengthen the measures against Russia.

Boris Johnson says Vladimir Putin is ‘already failing Ukraine’

Prime Minister urges world leaders to continue united front

One month after the start of the conflict, Mr Johnson should call on the international community to pursue its unified position on Ukraine and collective action on economic, military and diplomatic measures.

He is also set to urge Britain’s allies to step up a gear in response to Russia’s use of increasingly heavy-handed tactics, including doubling down on economic sanctions against the Kremlin.

“Vladimir Putin is already letting Ukraine down,” the Prime Minister will say.

“The people of Ukraine have shown themselves to be extraordinarily brave and tenacious in defending their homeland from an unprovoked attack.

“But we cannot and will not sit idly by while Russia blasts Ukrainian towns to dust. The UK will work with our allies to step up military and economic support to Ukraine, bolstering their defenses as they’re turning the tide of this fight.

“One month into this crisis, the international community faces a choice. We can keep the flame of freedom alive in Ukraine, or risk it being extinguished across Europe and the world.”

The new £25m funding will help pay the salaries of Ukrainian soldiers, pilots and police and ensure the armed forces are well equipped with high quality equipment.

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There are several possible scenarios, from outright victory for each side to a new world war where everyone loses.

Zelensky issues warning of new attacks

It comes after the Ukrainian president warned that Russian forces were using the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone to prepare new attacks.

Volodymyr Zelensky issued his warning – without citing evidence – during a virtual speech to Japan’s parliament this morning.

The Russian army seized the disused factory at the start of the month-long war. The exclusion zone is the contaminated area around it, where the world’s worst nuclear meltdown occurred in 1986.

President Zelenskyy said on Wednesday afternoon that Boris Johnson had offered “assurances of his support” ahead of an extraordinary NATO summit on Thursday.

The pair discussed the “course of hostilities and defense assistance to Ukraine,” Mr Zelenskyy tweeted, adding: “We will win together.”

Commenting on the conversation between the Prime Minister and Mr Zelenskyy, a Downing Street spokesperson said: ‘The Prime Minister has signaled his intention to use tomorrow’s G7 and NATO meetings to increase pressure on Vladimir Putin’s regime and work with partners to dramatically increase defensive lethal aid to Ukraine.

“Leaders would seek to meet Ukraine’s demands and ensure that President Zelenskyy is in the strongest possible position in the ongoing peace talks.”

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Jens Stoltenberg said a nuclear war cannot be won.

NATO chief issues nuclear war warning to Moscow

On Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned against the conflict drifting into a nuclear confrontation between Russia and the West.

He said Moscow “should stop this dangerous and irresponsible nuclear rhetoric” and that it “must understand that it can never win a nuclear war” – in response to a question from Sky News correspondent Mark Stone.

The government will also provide the BBC World Service with additional emergency funding of £4.1 million to support its Ukrainian and Russian language services in the region and help it create content to counter war misinformation in Ukraine.

The money will be provided by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

The UK has already supplied more than 4,000 anti-tank weapons to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, including Next Generation Anti-Tank Light Weapons, or NLAW, systems and Javelin missiles.

Justice Secretary Dominic Raab will also chair a meeting of justice and foreign ministers in The Hague on Thursday to coordinate support for the International Criminal Court’s war crimes investigations.

He is expected to announce an additional £1million in funding for the tribunal, as well as new support from British intelligence-gathering soldiers.

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Edward L. Robinett