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M-6: Ongoing Situation in Ukraine
A few months ago this House received an update from the government as to the ongoing situation in Ukraine. As a result of recent developments in the situation there, I thought it appropriate as Foreign Secretary to brief the House as to the current state of affairs and the government's position on the matter.
As you all now know, the number of people killed since the conflict began in December has now risen to 9. I speak for the entire government when I say that we condemn this needless violence in the strongest terms. The Ukrainian people must be permitted to express their opinion, and to seek recourse for their concerns via the pre-established legal channels. Violence is never justified, and it is totally unacceptable that any innocent Ukrainian would lose their life as a result of this conflict.
Today the government is again calling on President Yanukovych and his government to handle the disputes peacefully, within the rule of law, and with respect for the rights of the Ukrainian people. It is the government's belief that this is a domestic issue that is best handled by the people of Ukraine, and through the legitimate functions of the Ukrainian government. With that said, the United Kingdom will continue to work alongside our allies in the European Union and the United States to provide whatever diplomatic assistance may be necessary to ensure the existing dispute is resolved peacefully and without any further bloodshed.
Most critically, I want to confirm to the House that the government's warning against British nationals traveling to Ukraine is still in force. British citizens should avoid traveling to Ukraine, as the situation on the ground remains dangerous and the events have the capacity to escalate quickly.
The Ukrainian and British people have built a strong friendship, and we value our close connection with Ukraine. The government is committed to doing what we can to bring this dispute to an end, and to ensure the wellbeing of our friends in Ukraine. The government will continue to update this House and the country as we learn more.
I commend this statement to the House.
The situation in Ukraine is very worrying. To see such violence on the streets of any city let alone a capital city in Europe is incredibly worrying. I would echo the calls for restraint on behalf of the government and the protestors, but I would remind those members of the house or fellow members of the EU that would rush to champion the protestors that the members of the security forces in Ukraine have the right to the defend themselves in the course of their duties in the same way that our Police and Armed forces do, that they have a duty to protect the institutions and constitution of the Ukraine from armed rebellion. These are not simple protests, these are violent protests that have openly called for revolution against the democratically elected government. The violence protests are being led by a vanguard of militant Ukraine nationalists who openly hold Neo-Nazi ideology and celebrate collaborators with the Nazi occupation of Ukraine, they represent a threat to the stability of the region and to the cohesion of democratic multi ethnic Ukraine and should not be given support by the UK or other members of the EU.
Member of Parliament for Blaenau Gwent
Total Experience: 29