Following Russia’s invasion, Rishi Sunak and other world leaders claim to be ‘steadfast’ in their support for Ukraine.
Ahead of this week’s G7 summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the Western allies warned Vladimir Putin and imposed new sanctions against him.
The British prime minister said to Putin, “My message is clear. We’re not leaving.
‘Russia needs to know that we and other countries remain steadfast in our resolve to support Ukraine, not just in the here and now with the resources it needs to protect itself, but for the long term as well.’
He added to ITV News: ‘They can’t just outlast us in this conflict.
‘One of the common topics of conversation I’ll be having and have been having with my fellow leaders is about the longer-term security agreements that we put in place in Ukraine, to deter future Russian aggression.’
As part of its new sanctions the UK will ban imports of Russian diamonds, copper, aluminium and nickel.
The diamond export industry was previously worth more than £3 billion to Russia.
New individual sanctions are also being placed by the UK on 86 people and companies.
There has been uncertainty whether the EU will also ban Russian diamonds, as the trade is particularly lucrative for Belgium.
Mr Sunak told the BBC: ‘I’m hopeful and confident that our partner countries will follow as they have done when we’ve done this previously, that will make the sanctions more effective, ensure that Russia pays a price for its illegal activity.’
The UK PM yesterday signed a new defence and security pact with Tokyo – and received a nice new pair of bright red socks – over dinner with his Japanese counterpart, Fumio Kishida.
The three-day G7 summit will see the UK, the US, Canada, Japan, France, Germany and Italy discuss military and economic support for Ukraine, as well as the security of Taiwan following aggression from China.
Mr Sunak’s official spokesperson said: ‘Guarding against economic coercion is something that the prime minister is pushing for.’
Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky is expected to attend the summit in person as a guest on Sunday, as is Indian prime minister Narendra Modi.
Mr Modi has previously remained neutral on the Russian invasion, due to his links with Mr Putin.
But Mr Sunak said he has seen ‘positive’ steps from India in its stance on the war.
He told reporters on a plane to Japan: ‘One thing we have to keep doing is talking to countries like India and also Brazil, that is going to be in that second part of the summit which is a good thing.’