Russia war fears as UK gives ‘green light’ for invasion– world on brink | World | News

Tory MP Tobias Ellwood, who also serves as chair of the House of Commons Defence Committee, took to Twitter to condemn the move after defence secretary Ben Wallace said it would be highly unlikely the UK sends troops to defend Ukraine from invasion. In an interview with The Spectator, Wallace said Ukraine “is not a member of Nato so it is highly unlikely that anyone is going to send troops into Ukraine to challenge Russia”.

He added: “We can all help with capacity building but to some extent Ukraine is not in Nato and that is why we are doing the best diplomatically to say to Putin don’t do this.”

Mr Ellwood, reacting to the news, posted on social media that this policy was likely to encourage the Russian president to act with lessened fears of consequences from the UK.

He posted on Twitter: “Watch this space: We’ve just given the green light to RUSSIA…”

Mr Wallace’s comments against UK intervention in Ukraine came just after the defence secretary issued a joint statement with the Ukrainian defence minister, Oleksii Yuriyovych Reznikov.

The two defence chiefs said they were “concerned” by Russian forces amassing at the Ukrainian border.

Estimates by US intelligence forces put up to 70,000 Russian soldiers on the edge of Ukrainian territory.

Mr Wallace had said previously that “the United Kingdom stands shoulder to shoulder with the people of Ukraine and will continue its long-standing determination to support them”.

Last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson issued a warning to Vladimir Putin, in which he told the Russian leader there would be “serious consequences” if Russia invaded Ukraine.

READ MORE: EU gets tough on Putin after UK pressure

US President Joe Biden has also called on Mr Putin to de-escalate tensions on the Russian border with Ukraine in recent weeks.

A senior White House official told CNN that Mr Biden told Mr Putin during a virtual meeting: “One nation can’t force another nation to change its border; one nation cannot tell another to change its politics.

“Nations can’t tell others who they can work with.”

In a subsequent press conference, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said: “We believe that dialogue is important especially when times are difficult as they are now.”

He added: “And our invitation to Moscow to meet in the NATO-Russia Council stands, and we are ready to sit down.

“But we will never compromise on the right of every sovereign nation, as Ukraine, to choose his own path and of the principle that it is for Ukraine and the 30 Allies to decide when Ukraine is ready to join the Alliance.”

Mr Putin issued a series of demands from Russia over the weekend in which he called for strict limitations on the actions of Nato in Eastern European countries.

Russia also denies intentions to invade Ukraine, but demanded that the possibility of Ukraine ever joining Nato was ruled out in order to de-escalate tensions.

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