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Karen Bradley on Ukraine crisis

article submitted by Karen Bradley MP

There are some weeks when there is only one subject on which I can write, and this is one of those weeks. At a scale we have not seen since 1945, Europe is at war. Not a civil war, or a border dispute, but the invasion of a sovereign state by a foreign army. Vladimir Putin, Russia’s president, has sent in troops to kill Ukrainians and take control of the country.

I am grateful for the many messages I have received from you in support of Ukraine. This war will affect us in the UK in so many ways – food and energy prices will undoubtedly rise. The local farmers that I met recently were very concerned about grain supplies, which come from Eastern Europe. Put bluntly, that grain is needed to feed our livestock and bake our bread.

A humanitarian crisis is also inevitable. The images of people fleeing their homes to save their families are heart-breaking. Nobody leaves their home through choice; it is a last resort when there is no other option. They will need safe places to stay, possibly many miles from their own homes.

What can we do to help? Britain’s superpower is our ability to build alliances and work with partners. We have to play our full part in sanctions against Russia. This means depriving Putin and his cronies of the money they have stolen from the Russian people. Putin has taken the wealth of a great nation and ferreted it abroad, hidden in a web of fraud. That money should be paying for the healthcare and education of the Russian people but has instead been spent on expensive shopping trips in the West.

We cannot stand by and watch Putin succeed. Ukraine is a sovereign democratic state; it needs and deserves our support. What happens there will have a lasting impact on our lives here. We must do all we can.

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