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'We will never force Ukraine to accept peace treaty,' says UK defense secretary

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk May 14, 2024 6:11 PM 2 min read
U.K. Defense Minister Grant Shapps speaks during a press conference in London on Dec. 11, 2023. (Photo for illustrative purposes) (Lucy North/PA Images via Getty Images)
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The U.K. will not force or persuade Ukraine to accept a bad peace treaty, especially one that entails the loss of territory, said Defense Secretary Grant Shapps in an interview with Times Radio on May 14.

The comments follow reporting by the Sunday Times that U.K. Foreign Secretary David Cameron had allegedly personally pitched a peace plan to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. The U.K. government stressed after the story that its position toward Ukraine had not changed.

Shapps reiterated the government's statement, saying, "There is just no sense at all in which Britain would try to persuade, strong-arm or otherwise, Ukraine into accepting giving up some of their territory."

"That's a decision entirely for Ukraine."

Shapps' comments differed from Cameron's allegedly proposed peace plan that the Sunday Times reported.

According to an undisclosed senior source, the Sunday Times wrote on May 12 that Cameron said that further aid would help Ukraine hold the front lines and give Trump the "best possible conditions" to mediate a peace deal.

According to the outlet's source, Cameron passed this message to Trump: "What are the best conditions in which you as president can make a deal in January? It's both sides holding their lines and paying a price for that."

The U.K. has been a staunch ally of Ukraine since the outbreak of the full-scale war. Cameron visited Ukraine earlier in May, and London recently announced its largest defense aid package for Ukraine worth 500 million pounds ($628 million).

PM Sunak to announce largest-ever military aid package to Ukraine during visit to Poland
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will announce a 500-million-pound ($617 million) uplift in military support for Ukraine during his visit to Poland on April 23.
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