Mr John Whittingdale
Does my hon. Friend agree that the UK has a special responsibility as a signatory of the Budapest memorandum, which guaranteed the territorial integrity of Ukraine? Indeed, Russia was also a signatory. Will the Government look to increase the support we give not just to the Ukrainian forces in the Donbass region, but to those defending the Ukrainian ports on the Black sea from any possible incursions from Russian-occupied Crimea?
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs
Russia is very clearly in breach of the commitments it signed up to under the Budapest memorandum through its failure to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and through its use of force against Ukraine. We remain willing to engage in consultations, as provided for under that memorandum, as we did back in March 2014 in Paris after Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea. Russia is refusing to engage, despite the fact that the memorandum obliges it to do so in circumstances where the memorandum is questione
We will stand by the people of Ukraine. We are considering extending the support we are giving to Ukraine to help it defend itself, but I need this to be clear: there is nothing in that support that could be construed as offensive or as a threat towards Russia. NATO is a purely defensive organisation and itself poses no threat to Russia.