UK Considers More Troops For NATO Amid Russia-Ukraine Crisis

by PTI - Jan 30, 2022 06:01 PM +05:30 IST
UK Considers More Troops For NATO Amid Russia-Ukraine CrisisNATO troops

London, Jan 30 (PTI) Embattled British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is yet to receive a crucial report into alleged COVID lockdown breaches under his leadership, on Sunday tried to focus attention on the crisis with Russian troop build-up on the Ukrainian border.

Downing Street said the UK government is expected to bolster its offer to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) with a major military deployment to strengthen Europe’s borders in the face of “rising Russian aggression”.

UK officials will be deployed to Brussels to finalise the details of the offer with NATO next week, and ministers will discuss the military options on Monday.

'This package would send a clear message to the Kremlin – we will not tolerate their destabilising activity, and we will always stand with our NATO allies in the face Russian hostility,” said Johnson.

'If President Putin chooses a path of bloodshed and destruction, it will be a tragedy for Europe. Ukraine must be free to choose its own future. I have ordered our Armed Forces to prepare to deploy across Europe next week, ensuring we are able to support our NATO allies on land, at sea and in the air,” he said.

It comes after Johnson asked UK defence and security chiefs to step up defensive efforts in Europe during a high-level intelligence briefing on the situation in Ukraine this week.

Downing Street said the additional troop deployment is intended to reinforce NATO’s defences and underpin the UK’s support for its Nordic and Baltic partners.

Johnson is also expected to speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin and travel to the region sometime next week to relay the message that without deterrence and diplomacy thousands of lives will be lost in both Russia and Ukraine. A second trip to meet NATO member counterparts is being planned for early next month.

UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace are also preparing to make visits to Moscow for talks with their counterparts in the coming days. They will be asked to improve relationships with President Putin’s government and encourage de-escalation, Downing Street said.

Against the backdrop of weeks of leadership challenges from the Opposition and backbench MPs within his own Conservative Party, Johnson will be hoping to focus on the military crisis in the region during a high-level Cabinet meeting planned for Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the timeframe for Downing Street to receive a draft of the much-awaited Cabinet Office inquiry report into the so-called partygate scandal remains shrouded in uncertainty.

According to reports, the civil servant heading the inquiry, Sue Gray, is expected to hand over an edited version of the report next week following a Scotland Yard request to make 'minimal reference' to events currently being investigated by the Metropolitan Police’s Central Specialist Crime Command.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.

An Appeal...

Dear Reader,

As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.

Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.

We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.

Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.

Become A Patron
Become A Subscriber
Comments ↓
Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.
Advertisement

Latest Articles

    Artboard 4Created with Sketch.