Strength on the battlefield is the quickest route to peace in Ukraine – British Foreign Secretary
VALLETTA (Reuters) – Helping Ukraine arm itself so that it can defend itself against Russia is the fastest route to peace, British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said in an article published on -Nobody.
Wisely he wrote in a Maltese newspaper ahead of Tuesday’s visit to the Mediterranean island, which took over the presidency of the UN Security Council in early February.
“Like all authoritarian rulers, (Russian President Vladimir) Putin only responds to the strength of his opponents,” wrote Cleverly in the Times of Malta.
He added that he was happy that Germany and the United States agreed together with Great Britain to send tanks to Ukraine.
“Giving Ukrainians the tools they need to get the job done is the fastest — indeed, the only — path to peace,” he wrote.
The war in Ukraine is expected to dominate the talks between Great Britain and Malta, a member of the European Union.
The island has tried to help Ukraine by enforcing EU sanctions and providing humanitarian aid, including medicine and power generators. A small number of Ukrainian soldiers are also being treated in Maltese hospitals.
Other issues likely to come up during Cleverly’s visit are Britain’s relations with the EU, relations with North African countries, particularly Libya, and migration.
Great Britain and Malta, a former British colony, have traditionally had close ties, with the British supporting Malta in areas such as the training of military officers, the provision of health care and specialist education. The United Kingdom is the biggest source of tourism for Malta and one of its main trading partners.
However, the CEO of the Chamber of Small and Medium Enterprises of Malta said that last week Brexit was a “terrible experience for Maltese companies”.
“As a result of Brexit, business practices had to change and even for British firms in Malta things are not as comfortable as they were,” said Abigail Mamo to the local media.
(Reporting by Christopher Scicluna; Editing by Keith Weir and Frances Kerry)