The British are preparing for a ‘big’ military deployment in Europe | Abroad

The United Kingdom is considering offering NATO a large number of troops, weapons, warships and aircraft for deployment in Europe. Prime Minister Boris Johnson wants to send a “clear message” to the Kremlin, he reported on Saturday evening.

Watch below: Johnson warns of a violent blitzkrieg in Ukraine

The “significant” military deployment will reportedly be presented to NATO’s military command next week. It includes a doubling of the 1,150 British forces already in Eastern Europe, as well as “defensive weapons” that could be sent to Estonia. The Prime Minister’s Office said Britain’s aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales was on standby to deploy “within hours” should tensions escalate.

‘clear message’

“This package will send a clear message to the Kremlin – we will not tolerate their subversive activities and will always stand by our NATO allies in the face of Russian hostility,” Johnson said in a statement. “I have instructed our armed forces to prepare to deploy across Europe next week so that we can support our NATO allies.”

If Russian President Vladimir Putin “chose the path of bloodshed and destruction in Ukraine, it would be a tragedy for the whole of Europe,” the British prime minister said. “Ukraine must remain free to choose its own future.”

Johnson plans to travel to the Ukraine region next week, although it has not yet been announced where he will go and when. He also plans to have a telephone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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Tensions escalate

Tensions over Ukraine have been rising for months, and Russia has more than 100,000 troops standing close to the Ukrainian border. Putin accuses the West of not taking Russia’s security concerns in Eastern Europe seriously, including the presence of Western forces in the region.

More than 900 British soldiers are now stationed in Estonia and more than 100 in Ukraine, taking part in a training mission that began in 2015. There are 150 or so Britons in Poland.

US President Joe Biden said Friday that he will “soon” send a small number of military personnel to Eastern European countries and NATO allies. The US Department of Defense has already put 8,500 US troops on standby for deployment to Eastern Europe.

See also: Biden: The United States will “soon” send troops to Eastern Europe

British Prime Minister Johnson visited RAF Valley, in Anglesey, Wales, a few days ago. © AP

Sophie Baker

"Award-winning music trailblazer. Gamer. Lifelong alcohol enthusiast. Thinker. Passionate analyst."

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