Boris Johnson: We will make Ukraine so strong that no country will attack it again

Prime MInister tells MPs in Kyiv ‘Ukraine will win’ as he becomes first world leader to address its parliament since Russian invasion

EUROPE EDITOR. 3 May 2022 • 4:20pm

Britain and its allies will continue to arm Ukraine until it is so strong it can never be invaded again, Boris Johnson told the Ukrainian parliament on Tuesday.

“Ukraine will win, Ukraine will be free,” he said in the first address to the Verkhovna Rada in Kyiv by a world leader since Russia’s invasion in February.

The Prime Minister was given a standing ovation by Ukrainian MPs. Some brandished British flags and banners thanking the UK for weapons sent by London to help fight against Russia.

Speaking on a live video link, Mr Johnson said Britain would send a new package of support worth £300 million, including radars to pinpoint Russian artillery, thousands of night vision devices and heavy-lift drones to supply Ukrainian forces.

The UK is sending Brimstone anti-ship missiles and Stormer anti-aircraft systems and 13 armoured vehicles to rescue civilians from areas under siege and get key workers in position to repair infrastructure.

“We will carry on supplying Ukraine, alongside your other friends, with weapons, funding and humanitarian aid until we have achieved our long-term goal, which must be so to fortify Ukraine that no one will ever dare to attack you again,” said Mr Johnson. “We in the UK will do everything we can to restore a free sovereign and independent Ukraine.”

Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, made his first appearance in parliament since the war began, and was greeted with cheers and applause.

“Ukraine and Britain have gone from partners to friends and brothers, and the one who lied that he was a friend and brother has gone from being a neighbour to being an occupier and terrorist,” he said, referring to Russia.

“Is this sad? Yes. Is it frightening? No, it’s not frightening when beside you you have a friend such as Britain and a leader such as Boris Johnson.”

Mr Johnson said many experts expected “Russian armour to be like an irresistible force going like a knife through butter and that Kyiv would fall within days.”

“You have proved them completely wrong, every one of those military experts who said Ukraine would fall,” he told the parliament on the day the British embassy reopened in Kyiv.

“You have exploded the myth of Putin’s invincibility and you have written one of the most glorious chapters in military history and in the life of your country. This is Ukraine’s finest hour, that will be remembered and recounted for generations to come.

“Your children and grandchildren will say that Ukrainians taught the world that the brute force of an aggressor counts for nothing against the moral force of a people determined to be free.

“When we look at the heroism of the Ukrainian people and the bravery of your leader, Volodomyr Zelensky, we know that Ukraine will win,” he said.

When he addressed the UK Parliament in March, Mr Zelensky also evoked Winston Churchill, saying: “We will fight in the forests, in the fields, on the shores, in the streets.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and MPs applaud during Boris Johnson's speech to the parliament in Kyiv
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and MPs applaud during Boris Johnson’s speech to the parliament in Kyiv CREDIT: Ukraine presidential press service/Shutterstock

Mr Johnson accused Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, of “sowing the seeds of catastrophe, for himself and for his country,” and said his army was guilty of war crimes.

“This is about the right of Ukrainians to protect themselves against Putin’s violent and murderous aggression,” he said. “It is about Ukrainian democracy against Putin’s tyranny.”

Mr Johnson admitted the West had failed to impose tough enough sanctions on Russia after its 2014 invasion of Ukraine and said: “We cannot make the same mistake again.”

He also said neither the UK nor any other country could put pressure on Kyiv to agree to a quick peace with Moscow because it had suffered so much.

Putin told Emmanuel Macron, the French president, on Tuesday that he was willing to discuss peace with Kyiv in a call.

Meanwhile, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was proof that Ireland desperately needed a “fit for purpose” military, the country’s defence chief warned. “Continuing the status quo is simply not credible. It is not an option,” said Lieutenant General Sean Clancy.

8 comments

  1. Wonderful Boris.
    But Mariupol and Kherson are still under putinazi occupation and indescribable atrocities have already been committed. Go the extra mile and help Ukraine push those genocidal freaks out.
    In the words of Edgar Broughton:

    OUT DEMONS OUT!

    Liked by 3 people

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