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Zelensky hails Boris surviving Tory coup bid saying he is ‘very happy’ that Ukraine has kept an ‘important ally’
- Volodymyr Zelensky hailed Boris Johnson’s narrow escape from Tory coup bid
- Ukraine president said he was ‘happy’ describing the PM as an ‘important ally’
- Mr Johnson and Mr Zelensky have struck up a ‘bromance’ during the conflict
Volodymyr Zelensky today hailed Boris Johnson’s narrow escape from the Tory coup bid.
The Ukrainian president said he was ‘very happy’ that the PM had survived, describing him as an ‘important ally’.
The two leaders have struck up a ‘bromance’ during the war with Russia, speaking regularly on the phone.
Mr Johnson was among the first leaders to visit Kyiv after the conflict started, and the UK has been a major donor of weapons and funding.
The PM was opposed by 148 Conservative MPs – 40 per cent of the total – in the confidence vote last night.
But he defiantly told Cabinet this morning that he wants to ‘move’ on. ‘We are able now to draw a line under the issues that our opponents want to talk about,’ Mr Johnson said.
Volodymyr Zelensky today hailed Boris Johnson’s narrow escape from the Tory coup bid (pictured together in Kyiv in April)
Mr Johnson defiantly told Cabinet this morning that he wants to ‘move’ on from the Tory confidence vote
Speaking in an online FT event, Mr Zelensky said: ‘I’m glad we haven’t lost a very important ally, this is great news.’
Meanwhile, a Ukrainian MP has said her country is ‘truly grateful’ for the UK’s donation of long-range missiles but said more air support is needed to compete with Russia.
Britain is sending its first long-range missiles after Vladimir Putin struck the outskirts of Kyiv for the first time since April.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said an unspecified number of M270 launchers are being supplied, which can fire precision-guided rockets up to 50 miles – a longer range than any missile technology currently in use in the war.
‘That will actually make a difference on the battlefield,’ Inna Sovsun, the deputy leader of the Holos Party, said.
‘If it did come earlier we would have saved so much life and so much less damage would have been done.
‘It’s a good start and we truly appreciate it, everybody in Ukraine knows about that and we are truly grateful for that actually happening.
‘You have to realise that right now what is happening there is a battle of artillery, the one who has more artillery will win, and Ukraine unfortunately doesn’t have as much artillery to fight against the Russian artillery.
‘Everybody speaks the same phrase to the bravery of the Ukrainian army, and we agree with that very much, but bravery doesn’t save you from the Russian missiles and artillery.
‘Now, this is starting to make a difference, again we hope it comes in bigger numbers and we hope it comes as soon as possible.’
Ukrainian troops will be trained in the UK to use the equipment, Mr Wallace said.
Mr Johnson said the systems will help Ukraine ‘effectively repel the continuing Russian onslaught’.
Ms Sovsun said Ukraine is still in need of fighter jets, adding ‘we don’t have the air support that we need’.
The Ministry of Defence said the decision to provide the launchers was closely co-ordinated with the US government, which said it will supply high mobility artillery rocket systems to Ukraine.
The wreckage of residential buildings in Irpin, near Kyiv, after the Russian offensive
When the US announced it will be sending the missiles, Russian President Vladimir Putin vowed to hit new targets.
‘If they are delivered, we will draw appropriate conclusions from this and use our weapons, which we have enough of, to strike at those objects that we have not yet hit,’ he said in an interview with state TV channel Russia-1, which was filmed on Friday.
Ms Sovsun however said that Mr Putin’s threats did not change the situation for Ukraine.
She said: ‘He is saying ‘I will attack you if you get the weapons from the West’, but he will attack us anyway.’