Boris Johnson has cautioned French President Emmanuel Macron at today’s G7 meeting that political leaders must not give Vladimir Putin a “licence to manipulate” the West.
The Prime Minister waved away suggestions that the conflict should be resolved now in a veiled swipe at Macron’s recent comments that Putin must not be “humiliated” and should be given a path out of the war in Ukraine.
A Downing Street spokesperson said Johnson told Macron that “any attempt to settle the conflict now will only cause enduring instability and give Putin licence to manipulate both sovereign countries and international markets in perpetuity”.
It comes as Kyiv came under a fresh assault from Russian long range missiles this weekend, with one strike hitting a nine-story block of flats today.
Ukraine foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba said the fresh wave of attacks are intended by Putin as a message to the G7 leaders.
He tweeted that the “G7 summit must respond with more sanctions on Russia and more heavy arms for Ukraine”.
Johnson and Macron met today at this year’s G7 s summit in Germany’s Bavarian alps. The pair shared a close embrace in front of the cameras, despite the pair’s recent string of public rows.
Johnson praised Germany’s efforts in helping Ukraine defensively, while also failing to mention France at all in his comments after the bilateral meeting.
He also warned against western leaders becoming “fatigued” with the conflict.
When asked if western support is fracturing, the Prime Minister said: “I think the pressure is there and the anxiety is there, we’ve got to be honest about that. But the most incredible thing about the way the West has responded to the invasion of Ukraine by Putin has been the unity — Nato has been solid, the G7 has been solid and we continue to be solid.”