TORY Defence Secretary Grant Shapps has announced that UK troops are to be sent to the Ukraine ‘to train Zelensky’s military on the ground’ and that the Royal Navy will be sent to the Black Sea to ‘defend commercial vessels’.
While the United States Congress voted late on Saturday night to cease financing Ukraine’s war against Russia, Shapps used an interview with yesterday’s Sunday Telegraph newspaper to announce a major escalation of the British commitment.
Shapps said that he has held talks with Army leaders about ‘shifting an official British-led training programme into Ukraine’ and also called for British defence firms to set up factories in the Ukraine.
In response, ex-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned that British soldiers training Ukrainian troops in Ukraine would be legitimate targets for Russian forces along with German companies building Taurus missiles.
‘(This will) turn their instructors into a legal target for our armed forces,’ Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, warned in a post on Telegram on Sunday.
‘Understanding perfectly well that they will be ruthlessly destroyed and not as mercenaries, but namely as British NATO specialists,’ he added.
More than 20,000 recruits from the Ukrainian armed forces have already received training in the UK since the beginning of 2022 under the British-led Operation Interflex.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday met with Shapps, discussing ways to further boost Ukraine’s military, including its air defenses.
‘I am profoundly grateful to the UK for all the financial, humanitarian, and military support, including crucial long-range capabilities,’ said Zelensky.
‘We discussed further defence cooperation and steps to strengthen Ukraine’s air defence,’ he added.
Medvedev also addressed Germany, condemning those pushing for Berlin to supply Ukraine with Taurus cruise missiles that have the capability to strike Russian territory.
‘They say this is in accordance with international law. Well, in that case, strikes on German factories where these missiles are made would also be in full compliance with international law, he said.
‘These morons are actively pushing us towards World War Three,’ Medvedev added.
Medvedev emphasised that such actions by the West increase the likelihood of World War Three.
‘Those advocating such actions are actively pushing the world closer to a devastating global conflict,’ he said.