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British Defence Secretary pledges continued support for Ukraine

 
Kiev, Nov 18 (IANS) Visiting British Defence Secretary, Ben Wallace said his country stands ready to continue its support for Ukraine, according to a statement issued by the Ukrainian Defence Ministry.

"The UK stands shoulder to shoulder with the people of Ukraine and will continue its long-standing determination to support
them," Wallace added in the joint statement with Ukrainian Defence Minister, Oleksiy Reznikov following their talks in Kiev on Tuesday.

In the statement, Reznikov and Wallace said last week the governments of their countries signed an agreement that would continue progress on the joint projects to develop the capabilities of the Naval forces of the Armed forces of Ukraine, Xinhua news agency reported.

The agreement followed another deal signed in June between Ukraine, the UK and British industry representatives, which is aimed at boosting Ukraine's naval capabilities.

Ukraine and the UK, which are strategic partners in security and defence, remain "vigilant and united" in the defense of their common values and freedoms, the statement said.

Wallace arrived in Kiev on Tuesday for a one-day working visit. During his visit, he also held talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Britain provides assistance to Kiev in the wake of the conflict in eastern Ukraine that started in 2014.

In 2015, Britain launched Operation Orbital, a training program for the Ukrainian Armed forces, following the request of the Ukrainian authorities.

So far, the British Armed Forces had trained more than 20,000 Ukrainian servicemen as part of bilateral military cooperation.

--IANS
int/khz/