Russia’s “bullying” does not discourage Britain from supporting Ukraine: Secretary of Defense

Defense Minister Ben Wallace said Britain was “not stopped by bullying” by Russia when it came to supporting allies such as Ukraine.

Wallace addressed the House of Commons on Monday, saying he would visit “many countries” in Eastern Europe and Scandinavia this week. “Many of them are very worried about what is happening.”

Tens of thousands of Russian troops are rallying near the Ukrainian border, raising Western concerns about the possibility of Russia’s aggression.

Mr Wallace told lawmakers that Britain “works with people who want to work with them who share our values.”

“We are not deterred by bullying, nor by distance,” he said. “We will step up and help if Eastern European countries, Scandinavian countries, Ukraine countries want our help.”

Epoch Times Photo
On January 10, 2022, Ukrainian soldiers are standing on the line of separation from pro-Russian rebels in the Donetsk region of Ukraine. (Andriy Dubchak / AP)

Wallace also said it was important to help Ukraine “maintain the capabilities of the Navy” after the country lost most of its Navy when Russia annexed Crimea illegally.

Russia refused NATO’s application to join the Ukrainian military alliance and demanded that it roll back its deployment in Eastern Europe.

Russian and US officials met in Geneva, but showed no signs of narrowing their differences in security between Ukraine and broader Europe.

Russia will meet with NATO in Brussels on Wednesday and with a representative of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OECD) in Vienna on Thursday.

“We look forward to the best results of this week’s diplomatic efforts, but we shouldn’t be overly optimistic and prepared for the worst,” Wallace said at an event commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Falklands War on Monday. rice field.

“There is little need to clarify the similarities to 40 years ago, but what is most valuable to me is the threat to our country, our people, our allies, and our territory. Can happen anytime, from any direction, “he said.

“Distance should not discourage Britain, nor should the scale of the challenge be discouraged. History is full of the consequences of those who underestimated this small island.”

The Foreign, Commonwealth of the United Kingdom (FCDO) has also called on Russia to “stop the aggression.”

“The United Kingdom has made it clear to Russia that it will not accept campaigns to destroy democratic neighbors in close cooperation with allies and partners, including the United States,” a spokesman said.

“A military invasion of Ukraine will be a major strategic mistake with serious costs,” he said.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Chan