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G7’s new security arrangement with Ukraine could ‘return peace to Europe’, PM declares | Politics News

The G7 is set to sign a long-term security arrangement with Ukraine, which Rishi Sunak has said will potentially “return peace to Europe”.

The accord marks the first time so many countries have agreed a comprehensive, multi-year security arrangement of such a nature with another country, No 10 said.

The G7 declaration, which is expected to be ratified in the margins of the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, is set to provide more defence equipment, increase and accelerate intelligence sharing and bolster support for cyber defences.

It plans to expand training programmes and military exercises, while also developing Ukraine’s industrial capabilities, Downing Street said.

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World leaders take photo after NATO dinner

Mr Sunak addressed the Munich security conference in February to lay out his argument why the international community had a duty to ensure Ukraine was never again left vulnerable to Russian brutality – and pushed for the country to be put in the best possible position for any future ceasefire negotiations.

The prime minister said the agreement would “send a strong signal to President Putin”.

“As Ukraine makes strategic progress in their counteroffensive, and the degradation of Russian forces begins to infect Putin’s frontline, we are stepping up our formal arrangements to protect Ukraine for the long term,” Mr Sunak said.

“We can never see a repeat of what has happened in Ukraine and this declaration reaffirms our commitment to ensure it is never left vulnerable to the kind of brutality Russia has inflicted on it again.

“Supporting their progress on the pathway to NATO membership, coupled with formal, multilateral, and bilateral agreements and the overwhelming support of NATO members will send a strong signal to President Putin and return peace to Europe.”

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Rishi Sunak and Joe Biden attend a NATO leaders summit in Vilnius, Lithuania
Rishi Sunak and Joe Biden were among the attendees in Vilnius

Pact could emulate defence agreement between US and Israel

No 10 did not set out precise details of what will be contained in the pact, but reports suggested the agreement with Kyiv could emulate the defence agreement between the US and Israel.

Washington and Tel Aviv have a military and technology deal to give Israel protection in the Middle East without offering a NATO-esque clause to come to its aid during a time of attack.

The G7 is made up of the UK, US, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, with the EU also represented at the talks.

UK to deliver more combat vehicles to Ukraine

The UK also announced plans to deliver more than 70 combat and logistics vehicles to Ukraine to boost its counteroffensive operation.

No 10 said the vehicles will ensure frontline forces have the means to carry ammo and equipment, evacuate injured soldiers and recover damaged vehicles.

Thousands of additional rounds of Challenger 2 ammunition will also immediately be delivered to Ukraine as part of the package, while a £50m equipment support contract will sustain what the UK has already provided to Ukraine, including spare parts, technical support and maintenance training.

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It comes after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy criticised the “absurd” absence of a timetable for his country to join NATO.

Mr Zelenskyy, who is due to attend the second day of the Vilnius summit on Wednesday, announced he had plans to hold talks with Mr Sunak and other G7 allies.

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