Politics

Boris Johnson says Britain could send tanks to Ukraine as he pledges more rocket launchers and anti-aircraft missiles


BORIS Johnson today dramatically upped the shipments of weapons Ukraine is using to batter evil Vladimir Putin’s army.

The PM pledged 800 more British made NLAW rocket launchers which have been making mincemeat of Russian tank columns.

Boris Johnson has announced new weapons shipments to Ukraine

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Boris Johnson has announced new weapons shipments to Ukraine
The PM announced Britain is sending more NLAWs to Ukraine

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The PM announced Britain is sending more NLAWs to UkraineCredit: Reuters
The UK will also supply Kyiv with extra Starstreak anti-aircraft missile systems

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The UK will also supply Kyiv with extra Starstreak anti-aircraft missile systemsCredit: PA

Speaking alongside German leader Olaf Scholz he also promised more Starstreak missile systems to shoot Kremlin jets out of the sky.

And he didn’t rule out taking the next step by arming the Ukrainian resistance with tanks to help them push out Russian forces.

He said: “I’m in principle willing to consider anything by way of defensive weaponry to help the Ukrainians protect themselves and their people.”

In the meantime the UK will provide extra equipment like helmets, night vision goggles, and body armour.

Boris said the new aid will add an extra £100 million of kit on top of what has already been supplied in the first seven weeks of the war.

Britain organised a donor conference for Ukraine last year which raised £1.5bn of military aid from Western partners.

It will result in an added 2.5 million pieces of kit for Kyiv’s armed forces, ranging from lethal weapons to rations and medical supplies.

The PM also revealed that there will be a joint meeting of the UK and German defence ministers later this year in a show of solidarity.

He appeared at the podium with Mr Scholz after holding Downing St talks on Europe’s response to the war in Ukraine.

Boris used the first face to face meeting to urge Berlin to go further on sanctions against Vladimir Putin’s evil regime.

He wants the EU to whack more Russian banks and cut off energy payments that are funding Moscow’s war effort.

Berlin has been resisting calls from countries like Poland and the Baltics for tougher sanctions.

It fears the economic fallout from closing the gas taps, with inflation rampant and businesses struggling.

Yesterday it succeeded in watering down a new EU embargo on Russian coal which will now only come into force in mid-August.

The EU has paid €35bn to Russia for energy since the start of the war compared to the €1bn it has given Ukraine in weapons.

The PM met German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in London

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The PM met German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in LondonCredit: PA
The pair discussed the war in Ukraine

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The pair discussed the war in UkraineCredit: AP

Mr Scholz said Germany is working hard to sever its dependence on Russian oil by the end of this year.

But he admitted it will take longer to completely wean the country off the Kremlin supplied gas.

He said: “We are doing all we can and we are doing a lot. It’s a very strong decision we took to go away from the use of fossil resources.

“We invest into becoming a country that will be just using renewables for electricity.”

Berlin has also been reluctant to approve arms shipments to Ukraine over fears of antagonising Putin.

At the start of the war it drew scorn from Kyiv for sending 5,000 helmets to the front-line.

It did later reverse a ban on lethal arms sales and is now handing over Panzerfaust 3 missile launchers.

But today the German government ruled out sending tanks to Ukraine, saying it needs them for its own defence.

Their talks came with Ukrainian forces pushing Russian troops back in many parts of the country.

There are now hopes they could retake the southern city of Kherson, which was seized by Moscow at the start of the conflict, within days.

As the Kremlin’s forces retreat they are leaving behind horrendous evidence of war crimes including mass executions of civilians.

In many areas the Russians have had to pull out swiftly meaning they didn’t have time to cover up their barbarism.

This morning Moscow killed at least 50 innocent civilians when it launched a missile strike on a railway station.

Those who lost their lives were among thousands waiting to board evacuation trains from Kramatorsk in the east of Ukraine.

The PM described the atrocity as “unconscionable” and insisted it won’t go unpunished by the West.

He said: “The attack at the train station in eastern Ukraine shows the depth to which Putin’s once vaunted army has sunk.

“It is a war crime indiscriminately to attack civilians and Russian crimes in Ukraine will not go unnoticed or unpunished.”





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