Prime Minister Rishi Sunak recently clarified the nation’s stance on sending troops to Ukraine to fight with the Russian army. Here’s the whole story.
This announcement comes in the wake of comments made by the UK’s recently appointed Defense Minister, Grant Shapps, who suggested sending troops to Ukraine for training purposes.
Since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, the UK has refrained from sending its troops to the region, opting for alternative means to support Ukraine while avoiding direct conflict with Russia.
Defense Minister Shapps articulated a vision involving sending military instructors to Ukraine to provide training, possibly within the UK or other Western nations.
The PM’s Stance
However, Prime Minister Sunak’s statements seemed to diverge from Shapps’ vision, as he clarified that there were no immediate plans to deploy British troops to Ukraine.
Sunak said, “What the defense secretary was saying was that it might well be possible one day in the future for us to do some of that training in Ukraine.”
“But that’s something for the long term, not the here and now. There are no British soldiers that will be sent to fight in the current conflict,” he added.
The rationale behind the UK’s cautious approach lies in the potential risks of deploying troops directly to Ukraine.
Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned that any British troops training Ukrainian soldiers within Ukraine would become targets for Russian forces. Such a move could escalate tensions and directly involve British soldiers in the ongoing conflict.
Nonetheless, the UK remains committed to providing training and support to Ukrainian forces. Over the past year, the UK has trained approximately 20,000 Ukrainian soldiers through five-week military courses, as reported by Reuters.
Training Within Ukraine
The intention is to continue this training program, preparing a similar number of individuals for future challenges.
Defense Minister Shapps indicated a potential shift in military training location, suggesting that discussions with British military chiefs had opened the possibility of conducting training within Ukraine. He explained the opportunity to bring training “in country,” particularly in the western regions of Ukraine.
Additionally, Shapps expressed hope that British defense companies, such as BAE Systems, would proceed with plans to establish arms factories in Ukraine.
When addressing the Conservative Party’s annual conference, Shapps did not explicitly mention the earlier comments regarding troops being sent to Ukraine. Instead, he highlighted the gravity of the situation, admitting that the conflict was consuming both human lives and resources at an alarming rate.
The post Sunak’s Clarifies His Stance on British Soldiers in Ukraine first appeared on Edge Media
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Sasha Salmaan is a highly regarded writer and political commentator, specializing in UK politics, international relations, and issues of freedom and liberty. With a keen analytical mind, Salimaan offers in-depth coverage and critical insights into the British and global political landscape.