Foreign Secretary says West needs to ensure Putin loses in Ukraine 26 May 2022

  • Foreign Secretary Liz Truss travels to Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) on Thursday, where she will use an address to BiH armed forces to urge partners to continue to rally behind Ukraine, saying “we cannot take the foot off the accelerator now”

  • Truss aims to mobilise $100 million of UK-backed investment in Western Balkans by 2025, through investment partnerships agenda

  • Truss will re-affirm UK’s commitment to peace and stability in the Western Balkans, in the face of Russian malign influence

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss will today (Thursday 26 May) warn against “appeasement” of Vladimir Putin and tell allies and partners there must be no “backsliding” in support for Ukraine.

Truss will use a speech to BiH armed forces to rally allies for greater support for Ukraine, including delivering more weapons and targeted sanctions, and argue “we must all learn the lessons of history” in standing up to Putin, ensuring he loses in Ukraine. BiH has been a vocal partner in the region, calling out Russia’s illegal behaviour in Ukraine.

In a speech to the BiH armed forces at Sarajevo’s Army Hall, the Foreign Secretary will say:

Russia’s aggression cannot be appeased. It must be met with strength.

We must not allow a prolonged and increasingly painful conflict to develop in Ukraine.

We must be relentless in ensuring Ukraine prevails through military aid and sanctions. We can’t take our foot off the accelerator now.

Truss will also re-affirm the UK’s commitment to peace and stability in the Western Balkans, announcing UK plans to deepen its security and economic partnership with BiH in the face of secessionists and Russian attempts to influence and destabilise the country, a quarter-of-a-century since one of the worst conflicts in Europe. She will announce her aim to mobilise $100 million of UK-backed investment in Western Balkans by 2025, through investment partnerships agenda.

Addressing the secessionists within BiH directly, after sanctioning two political figures last month for their destabilising behaviour, Truss will say:

Bosnia and Herzegovina’s future lies in sovereignty and self-determination, in greater partnership with NATO and countries like the UK.

On Friday (27 May), the British Foreign Secretary continues her European visit, as she arrives in Prague for talks with Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský. She will praise the Czech Republic for its tough stance towards Russia, including supplying tanks to Ukraine, and urge more countries to follow its example.

Truss will also galvanise allies, including the Czech Republic, to work together on a new Marshall Plan for Ukraine, ensuring the country’s speedy reconstruction.

In Prague, the Foreign Secretary will also sign a statement of intent to agree a Strategic Bilateral Framework between the UK and Czech Republic, ensuring we work more closely together in a number of areas, including security cooperation, trade, science & innovation and climate.

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