UK Foreign Secretary Backs British Nationals Who Want to Fight in Ukraine

Britain’s Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has said she would support British nationals who choose to fight alongside the Ukrainian forces against Russian aggression.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Sunday that his country is establishing a foreign legion for volunteers from abroad.

Asked on the BBC’s “Sunday Morning” programme if she would support UK citizens who choose to answer the call, Truss said, “That is something people can make their own decisions about.”

But she said she would “absolutely” support any would-be volunteer fighters, as “the people of Ukraine are fighting for freedom and democracy, not just for Ukraine but for the whole of Europe.”

Supporters of Ukraine demonstrate in Whitehall outside of Downing Street for a third successive day, in London on Feb. 26, 2022. (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

The foreign secretary warned that NATO may eventually get embroiled in a conflict with Russia if President Vladimir Putin is not stopped in Ukraine.

Truss told Sky News’ “Trevor Phillips on Sunday” programme that there will be an “economic cost” in Britain but that it was a price the country had to be prepared to pay.

“If we don’t stop Putin in Ukraine we are going to see others under threat—the Baltics, Poland, Moldova, and it could end up in a conflict with NATO,” she said.

With the Russian advance on Kyiv apparently slowed, Truss said Putin could escalate Russia’s use of violence to break the Ukrainian resistance.

“This could well be the beginning of the end for Putin. I fear that he is prepared to use the most unsavoury means in this war,” she said.

“He should be aware the International Criminal Court is already looking at what is happening in Ukraine. There will be serious consequences for him and for the Russian government.”

Truss urged the Russian government not to escalate the conflict, but said the West needs to be prepared for Russia to seek to use “even worse weapons.”

“We need to avoid this at all costs. This is why it is so important, the work we are doing to degrade the Russian military complex,” she said.

Truss said the UK and its Western allies would continue to impose fresh sanctions on Moscow.

“We need to stop Putin’s ambitions in Ukraine. There are dire consequences if we don’t for freedom and democracy across Europe,” she said.

“We will continue to tighten the ratchet on Vladimir Putin, to tighten the ratchet on the economy.”

She said the government is drawing up a “hit list” of Russian oligarchs associated with Putin to be targeted with sanctions.

“We will be targeting oligarchs’ private jets, we will be targeting their properties, we will be targeting other possessions that they have and there will be nowhere to hide,” she told Sky News.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Zhang


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