Advertisement

Sweden backs Ukraine to repel militias

Share this article

17:03 CEST+02:00
Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said on Monday that Russia needed to "back off" from its apparent destabilization strategy in Ukraine, adding if Sweden were in a similar situation it would do all it could to restore order.
Carl Bildt backed Ukraine's right to use force as more pro-Russian activists storm police stations and administrative buildings in eastern Ukraine. 
 
"If illegal armed groups took over police stations and local government offices in Sweden we would use all our instruments to restore order," he tweeted in the early hours of Monday morning. 
 
His sentiments have been echoed by Lithuania and Luxembourg in the past 24 hours. 
 
Before an EU conference in Luxembourg on Monday, the minister added that the Ukrainian police should not be afraid to employ violence.
 
"Police always use violence, in Sweden. To maintain law and order you need the possibility of using violence. The Swedish police do that too," he said, reported the TT news agency. 
 
He added that any other democratic state should and must respond similarly.
 
Bildt also laid out a series of demands for Russia as part of what he labelled a "de-escalation" process.
 
"It's very important that we very clearly demand that Russia backs off its destabilization strategy," he said on Monday.
 
He called for the invasion mandate to be revoked and for Russia to "clearly disassociate themselves from the armed illegal groups that are occupying government buildings and police stations in Ukraine". 
 
He demanded that the Russians take back their concentration of forces along the Ukrainian border.
 
"I think we should be very firm in our demands," he said, adding that if Russia did not respond "then we should be ready to move forward."
 

Story continues below…

Bildt also said he was worried by what he viewed as clear Russian attempts to prevent Ukraine from holding a presidential election on May 25th, TT reported. 
 
"Listen to what they are saying, they are quite clear: they don't want the election to be held, they want it to be postponed and to prevent it from being held in the near future. It is therefore very important that we give the election our strong backing and are ready to send in all the election observers needed to support the Ukrainian authorities.
 
The conference in Luxembourg resulted in the Council of the European Union approving a €1 billion macro-financial support package for Ukraine.
 

Share this article

Advertisement

From our sponsors

How to get British healthcare no matter where you are

Navigating the health care system in another country can be tough, and even when it all works out, sometimes you just miss the comfort of the system back home. But there's a solution.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Popular articles

Advertisement
Advertisement