Lord Cameron remains confident that the US will approve funding for Kiev
The US and its allies will not falter in their support for the Ukrainian cause, and Russia should not count on waiting them out, British Foreign Secretary Lord David Cameron told Parliament on Tuesday.
Cameron was prime minister between 2010 and 2016. Last November, he was made a baron and appointed Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs. Tuesday’s appearance before the Foreign Affairs Committee was his first since returning to government. The Ukraine conflict was among the topics that were raised during the questioning.
“Our commitment is such that with our allies, we want to demonstrate to [Russian President Vladimir] Putin very clearly that he cannot wait us out, and we are prepared to support Ukraine through 2024, ’25, ’26,” Cameron told the MPs. “We are prepared to give that support because it is the challenge of our generation.”
The Israeli war on Hamas in Gaza is “certainly” taking international attention away from Ukraine, “which I think is a pity,” Cameron said. “I think it’s the job of the strongest supporters of Ukraine – of which I would say Britain is rightly one – to do everything we can to keep it as high up the agenda as possible, to keep the partnership and coalition of countries that back Ukraine as strong and united and as purposeful as possible.”
Support for Ukraine is “not an issue of contention in British politics,” as it may be in the US and some other countries, he insisted. While London will continue to back Kiev even if Washington and others are slow to commit, “we really need the Americans to come forward with this package,” Cameron added. He was confident that the US Congress would do so eventually. The White House has asked for over $60 billion to fund Kiev in 2024.
Right now, the UK is working on mobilizing the military-industrial complex to manufacture ammunition and other weapons to meet Ukraine’s needs, Cameron said, noting there is “more to be done on that.” He argued it “should not be impossible” for the West to ramp up production, since its combined gross domestic product (GDP) is 25 times greater than Russia’s.
The US and its allies have given Ukraine over $200 billion worth of military aid since 2022, according to recent Russian Defense Ministry estimates. Ukraine’s own military industry has been severely damaged by the conflict, making Kiev almost entirely dependent on Western handouts.
London has played a key role in the conflict by encouraging Kiev not to make peace with Moscow. Then-PM Boris Johnson visited Ukraine in April 2022 and told President Vladimir Zelensky that the West was not interested in a deal with Russia. Ukraine then reneged on a preliminary ceasefire agreement it had signed in March in Istanbul.
January 10, 2024 at 01:59AM