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North West Norfolk MP James Wild says Ukrainian counterparts issued with AK47s during Russian war



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It is just over a week since that dark day when we woke to the news that Vladimir Putin had launched an invasion of Ukraine.

His unprovoked attack on a free and democratic nation has already had a catastrophic impact with hundreds of innocent civilians, including children, killed in this onslaught.

People are fleeing for their safety as artillery are launched on major cities including Kyiv, Kharkiv and Chernihiv. The bloodshed is due to the irrational actions of Putin who wants to subjugate Ukraine. As the Prime Minister has said we do not believe this war is in the name of the Russian people – Putin is not Russia.

North West Norfolk MP James Wild.
North West Norfolk MP James Wild.

In the face of the Russian state’s aggression, Ukraine’s armed forces and people have shown humbling courage to defend their homeland. Putin underestimated the resistance he would face reflecting the strength that free people can show when they and all they love are threatened.

When I joined other MPs to talk to our Ukrainian counterparts about the situation and how the international community could do more to help, it was sobering to be told that MPs had been issued with AK47s to protect themselves and their families.

As I wrote in the Lynn News last month, Russia’s attempts to divide Europe once again between free nations and those countries whose foreign and defence policies are explicitly constrained by Russia are unacceptable.

King's Lynn showing support to the people of Ukraine, with civic leaders, church members and others at a ceremony in front of Town Hall. Tanya Mikulova. MLNF-22PM02157
King's Lynn showing support to the people of Ukraine, with civic leaders, church members and others at a ceremony in front of Town Hall. Tanya Mikulova. MLNF-22PM02157

Britain stands with our allies who believe in freedom and the sovereignty of Ukraine. Together, we are imposing the most severe package of sanctions that Russia has seen. The sanctions announced so far are designed to maximise the economic price that Putin will pay.

That includes sanctioning individuals, closing off access to the SWIFT payment system and finance for Russian banks, and preventing the export of key goods and technologies to Russia.

These measures are already beginning to bite and there will be more to come.

King's Lynn showing support to the people of Ukraine, with civic leaders, church members and others at a ceremony in front of Town Hall. Tanya Mikulova. MLNF-22PM02156
King's Lynn showing support to the people of Ukraine, with civic leaders, church members and others at a ceremony in front of Town Hall. Tanya Mikulova. MLNF-22PM02156

Short of joining the war, the West must do all it can to support Ukrainian armed forces with lethal aid and other assistance. In addition to anti-tank weapons, the UK has taken the lead in co-ordinating military support this week with 25 countries which includes ammunition and anti-tank weapons.

The terrible cost of this invasion is falling on the people of Ukraine. Where people have managed to get across the border to safe countries, it is our moral duty to help them. On behalf of a constituent with family in Ukraine, I pressed for a more generous scheme to bring relatives to the UK and I welcome the new Ukrainian Family Scheme that extends eligibility to parents, siblings, and others.

There is also a humanitarian route for Ukrainians who may not have family ties here but who are able to match with individuals, charities, businesses, and community groups.

In the face of Ukraine’s bravery, Putin can be expected to double down and the terrible situation on the ground may become worse. It is our duty to do all we can support the courageous Ukrainian people fighting for their freedom. Slava Ukraini.

James Wild



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