Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy says he hopes Britain’s new prime minister, Liz Truss, will continue her predecessor’s staunch support for Kyiv in its fight against Russia’s unprovoked invasion.
Truss, who served as foreign minister under Prime Minister Boris Johnson, was confirmed on September 5 as Britain’s new prime minister.
Zelenskiy said he was “looking forward to the start of cooperation” with the 47-year-old Truss, who won a vote within the governing Conservative Party, defeating former Treasury chief Rishi Sunak.
“I believe that together we will be able to do much more for the defense of our nations and the failure of all destructive Russian efforts,” Zelenskiy said in his nightly address.
“We in Ukraine know her well — she has always been on the enlightened side of European politics,” he said, adding that “the main thing is to preserve our unity.”
Britain sent military hardware, funding, and training resources to back Kyiv’s forces under Johnson, who stepped down after months of scandal that saw support for his administration drain away.
Truss becomes the third female prime minister of the country after Theresa May and Margaret Thatcher.
She inherits an economy heading into a potentially lengthy recession and a cost-of-living crisis enveloping the country.
Truss has vowed a Thatcherite zeal to roll back state intervention and slash taxes. She also has promised to act “immediately” to tackle soaring energy bills.
The Kremlin has already said it saw little hope of positive coming from the appointment.
“I don’t think we can hope for anything positive,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on September 5.
France, meanwhile, said it hopes Truss can jump-start relations between the two countries.
“Let’s hope it is a new start,” Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna told RTL radio on September 5 when asked about bilateral prospects if Truss won the vote.