Zelenskyy and Sunak sign historic agreement on security cooperation between Ukraine and Britain: what is known
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Rishi Sunak have signed a historic agreement on security guarantees. The agreement will be valid until Ukraine joins NATO.
This was reported by an OBOZ.UA correspondent from a joint press conference of Zelensky and Sunak at the Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv. The agreement is called the "Agreement on Security Cooperation between Ukraine and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland."
The UK became the first Western country to sign such a document with Ukraine. The British government called the agreement historic.
In particular, it stipulates that the UK will share intelligence with Ukraine, help with cybersecurity, military training, and strengthen defense and industrial cooperation.
The document is the first security agreement to implement the agreements agreed upon during the NATO summit in Vilnius between Ukraine, G7 members, and other countries.
The document stipulates a ten-year term with the possibility of extension, but if Ukraine joins NATO before the end of the term, the security commitments will be terminated and Ukraine will be incorporated into the Alliance's system.
"This means more security, anti-tank weapons, missiles, hundreds of thousands of new artillery shells and training for thousands of Ukrainian troops," he said.
According to the British prime minister, the bilateral agreement formalizes the security arrangements that are in place now and ensures that the support is long-term - Moscow must understand that Britain stands with Ukraine.
The third component is designed to prevent a new attack after the current war ends.
"In case Russia attacks again, we will provide the support that Ukraine needs, fast and reliable security support, modern weapons on the ground, at sea and in the sky, economic support, and sanctions that will have a price for Russia. There is a clear and important commitment to this," Rishi Sunak said.
Zelenskyy, for his part, clarified that the agreement provides time for consultations with partners in case of a repeat of Russian aggression, and called the agreements reached powerful.
"This is not just goodwill. This is formalized relations between our countries, formalized assistance from our powerful partners. The amount is very serious, the term of this agreement is very specific. And while we are not in NATO, these are really powerful agreements and powerful support," the Ukrainian President said.
The President added that if such an agreement had been reached in 1991, there would be no war today.
"Today is the day when the history of Europe has changed. Ukraine and the United Kingdom have signed a new and unprecedented security agreement. This is not just a declaration. This is a reality that will come thanks to our cooperation and, in particular, security guarantees from a prominent global power - the United Kingdom," he said.
According to Zelenskyy, Ukraine will reach a security level that will serve to deter Russia by the very fact of its existence.
"I thank all the British for this result and for such confidence in Ukraine - each and every one of you who has been with us all this time and who wants life and justice to win, just as we do!" the Ukrainian leader thanked.
The head of the Presidential Office, Andriy Yermak, said that the main thing in the agreement with Bitania is long-term support for Ukraine.
"The agreement is comprehensive: information security, combating propaganda, cybersecurity, protection of critical infrastructure, defense and military cooperation, maritime security, sanctions against the enemy and achieving a just peace, Russia's responsibility for crimes, rebuilding Ukraine, humanitarian cooperation and macroeconomic stability," he wrote on his Telegram channel.
In addition, Ukraine can use the best British military experience and defense production to ensure victory on the battlefield, particularly in terms of long-range missiles, air defense and artillery ammunition, Yermak added.
According to the document, any future Russian invasion would violate the UN Charter and the fundamental principles of international law, and would seriously undermine Euro-Atlantic security, including that of Britain. In this case, at the request of any of the participants, consultations will be held within 24 hours to determine measures to counter or deter aggression.
"Security guarantees are a transitional stage to joining NATO. The Alliance is a key goal for Ukraine. The guarantees have been launched, after which the same agreements will be signed with our other allies. ...A truly historic day," the head of the OP said.
On his official Telegram channel, Zelenskyy posted footage of Rishi Sunak's visit, commenting on it with the following words:
"Today we stand side by side as friends and allies. This is a signal to the world: Ukraine is not alone. Glory to Ukraine!"
As reported by OBOZ.UA:
- Rishi Sunak arrived in Kyiv on the morning of January 12. It was reported that he was scheduled to meet with Zelenskyy and speak at the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
- On January 2, Zelenskyy and Sunak held telephone talks. The leaders discussed continued defense cooperation with a focus on further strengthening the air defense and long-range capabilities of the Armed Forces.