Rishi Sunak says the UK will stand behind Ukraine as he announces $60 million in defense aid on his first trip to Kiev since becoming prime minister.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced a new $60 million air defense package as he met Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on his first trip to Kiev since becoming prime minister.

“I am here today to say that the UK will stand with you… until Ukraine has won the peace and security it needs and deserves,” Sunak said at a press conference with Zelenskyy in Kyiv.

The British Prime Minister said the defense package includes “120 aircraft guns, radar and anti-drone equipment”. It comes as Russia knocked out almost half of the country’s energy systemcausing blackouts across the country as winter temperatures plunged to zero degrees.

Russia is increasingly focusing on Ukraine energy infrastructure with long-range strikes since last month including the use of what Kiev says are Iranian-made drones, for which Ukraine has sought air defense from the West.

“It is deeply humbling to be with you in your country today. The courage of the Ukrainian people is an inspiration to the world,” Sunak said.

“In years to come, we will tell our grandchildren your story, how proud and sovereign people rose up in the face of a terrible attack, how you fought, how you sacrificed, how you triumphed,” added Sunak.

Zelensky praised a “meaningful and useful visit for both our countries” at the joint press conference.

He said they “discussed the possibilities to protect European and Ukrainian energy security” and “our possibilities to protect Ukrainian airspace, as well as defense cooperation in general”.

On Twitter, Zelenskyy said “with friends like you by our side, we are confident in our victory”.

On the front, Ukraine has made major gains since late September by retaking large areas in the east and south of the country. Last week, Ukrainian troops recaptured the city of Kherson after nearly eight months of occupation.

The recent military setbacks have forced Moscow to call partial mobilization and firefighters. It intensified missile and drone strikes in the wake of its battlefield failures.

Sunak, a former finance minister, took office last month after Liz Truss’s short-lived premiership.

She and her predecessor Boris Johnson had both gone public support for Ukraine an important part of their agenda, a promise Sunak has kept.





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