Boris Johnson made a surprise visit to Kyiv for the second time this year in another strong show of support for Ukraine.
He met Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who had become a strong ally of the British Prime Minister since the start of the Russian invasion, and offered him a new training program for Ukrainian forces.
Speaking on Friday, Johnson said he wanted to “send a clear and simple message to the people of Ukraine: the UK is with you, and we will be with you until you finally win”.
Zelenskyy said in a video posted to Twitter: “Many days of this war have proven that Britain’s support for Ukraine is firm and resolute. Glad to see our country’s great friend Boris Johnson back in Kyiv.
The British Prime Minister missed a climate summit called by US President Joe Biden and canceled his scheduled appearance at a high-level gathering of Tory MPs in the north of England in order to make the trip.
Johnson’s appearance follows a visit by leaders of France, Italy and Germany this week as the European Commission adopted a recommendation that Ukraine be granted EU candidate status, a first step in the block membership process.
Johnson has been accused of being quick to promote his strong relationship with Ukraine whenever he faces questions about his own leadership, as he did after being fined by police for breaking the COVID lockdown rules.