Britain’s new leader slams Putin, hails Queen in first UN speech

British Prime Minister Liz Truss has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of issuing ‘sabre threats’ to cover up his failed invasion of Ukraine, as she prepared to tell the United Nations that its founding principles were fracturing due to the aggression of authoritarian states.

In his maiden speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday night, Truss will call the war in Ukraine a battle for ”our values ​​and the security of the whole world” and tout the late Queen Elizabeth II as a symbol of everything what UN means.

The text of the speech was published in advance by Truss’s office.

Responding to a statement by Putin that he was mobilizing reservists and using everything at his disposal to protect Russia – an apparent reference to its nuclear arsenal – Truss accused the Russian leader of “desperately trying to justify his catastrophic failures”. .

“It’s doubling down by sending even more reservists to a terrible fate,” the speech said. ”He is desperately trying to claim the mantle of democracy for a regime without human rights and freedoms. And he makes even more false claims and senseless threats.” ”That won’t work. The international alliance is strong – Ukraine is strong,” said Truss, who addressed the UN on the same day as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed the global gathering via video.

In a speech outlining his vision for foreign policy in a world turned upside down by the Russian invasion, Truss spoke of the Queen, whose funeral on Monday brought together many of the world leaders now gathered at the United Nations. She said the Queen “symbolized the post-war values ​​on which this organization was founded”. She said the monarch, who died this month after 70 years on the throne, “transcended difference and healed division”.

Truss referred to a speech given by the Queen to the UN in 1957, in which Elizabeth said that “the peoples of the world expect the United Nations to persevere in their efforts” to end conflicts and seizures.

Truss said the monarch had ‘warned that it is vital not only to have strong ideals, but also to have the political will to deliver them’. Now we have to show that will.” In her first international address since becoming prime minister two weeks ago, Truss hailed the founding principles of the United Nations, while calling for new international alliances to circumvent the influence of authoritarian regimes.

She said the founding principles of the UN “that have defined our lives since the dark days of the 1940s are fracturing” and that “geopolitics is entering a new era” in which “authoritarian states undermine stability and security in the world”. It was a direct shot at Russia — and also at China, whose growing influence among developing countries is a major concern for the United States and its allies.

Truss said the world’s democratic powers must woo developing countries with “strategic ties based on mutual benefit and trust” rather than “exerting influence through debt, aggression and corporate takeover.” ‘infrastructure and essential minerals’. hardening of the Western response to the Russian invasion. She called for sanctions against Russia and said ‘the G-7 and our like-minded partners should act as an economic NATO’, supporting countries targeted by ‘economic aggression by authoritarian regimes’ . She urged nations to find alternatives to Russian oil and gas and protect supply chains for everything from food to minerals. “The free world needs this economic strength and resilience to repel authoritarian aggression and win this new era of strategic competition,” she said. Truss said Britain post-Brexit was “building new partnerships around the world”, citing its role in NATO and the Joint Expeditionary Force military group of Northern European countries, including the importance has increased since the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

She also pointed to deepening ties with “other democracies like India, Indonesia and South Africa” ​​and trade ambitions with Indo-Pacific and Gulf states, a sign that the Britain, now outside the European Union, sees the rest of the world – and particularly Asia – as a political and economic priority.

The speech amounts to a bold statement of the new prime minister’s worldview. But Truss is likely to draw criticism for linking the global fight for freedom and democracy to his own plans to change Britain’s economy.

Saying that “our commitment to hope and progress must start at home”, Truss said demonstrating the power of democracy “starts with growing and building a UK economy that rewards business and attracts investments”. , that means reducing taxes for individuals and businesses and reducing regulations for businesses. Opponents say the tax cuts reward the rich more than the poor and will do little to alleviate a cost of living crisis, fueled in large part by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which pushed UK inflation to 10%, a level not seen in four decades.

Despite the economic shockwaves, Truss said Britain’s commitment to defending Ukraine “is total.” “This,” she said, “is a watershed moment of our history, of the history of this organization and of freedom.”

(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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