British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she would be traveling to Washington, DC, on Tuesday to meet her American counterpart Antony Blinken.
The United Kingdom will “drive forward” with “debilitating” the Russian economy alongside allies, Truss said in a briefing on Tuesday ahead of the visit to the US.
“What we’re (…) working with our allies to do is to debilitate the Russian economy, to stop the funding that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin is using for his war machine. We’ve implemented sanctions on the Russian central bank, on the SWIFT system, we’ve frozen bank assets and in fact the UK is freezing more bank assets than any other country, we’ve frozen a total of 364 billion ($478 billion) worth of assets. We’ve also closed UK airspace to Russian planes as well as closing our ports to Russian vessels,” Truss said.
Now is not the time to let up. We need to continue to drive forward in our support to Ukraine and our debilitation of the Russian economy,” Truss said.
“Oil and gas (are) important and we are working with the G7 in terms of creating a timetable for a reduction on dependency on Russian oil and gas and we need to go further on banks, we need to completely eliminate access to the SWIFT system, we need to freeze more bank assets,” Truss added.
“It’s important that we remain strong and united with our allies and it’s important that we ensure that Putin loses in Ukraine. The consequences of him not losing are simply too awful to contemplate,” she warned.
Truss said Putin’s invasion of Ukraine had “shattered European security” and the UK and allies were now “in a battle for information with Russia.” The Foreign Secretary said that in consequence, the UK had re-established an information unit that had been abandoned after the end of the Cold War.
Aside debilitating the Russian economy, Truss said the UK’s strategy also consisted in providing defensive weapons and humanitarian aid to Ukraine as well as isolating Russia diplomatically.
“What we’re working to do together with our G7 allies is encourage more of those countries to supply defensive weapons in support to Ukraine and encourage more of those countries to join us in sanctioning Russia. And it’s significant that countries like Switzerland, South Korea, Singapore have all joined that effort,” she said.
“I’m traveling to America to forward this agenda and I think it’s important to note that global security is indivisible, what is good for the Euro-Atlantic is good for the Indo-Pacific, and a strong NATO will help deter aggressors everywhere. And that is why we need to step up our efforts to strengthen European security together with our allies in Europe, including the EU and our NATO allies but also with the United States and allies like Japan,” Truss said.