US and UK Vow to Support Ukraine, Counter China

Photo credit; DW

President Joe Biden and the new British Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, agreed during talks to work together to support Ukraine and stand up to China. 

Biden and Sunak spoke for the first time a few hours after Sunak became the UK’s third prime minister in 2022. The two world leaders reaffirmed the “special relationship” between their two nations and vowed to work together to advance global security and prosperity. 

This includes addressing the issues of Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, as well as a looming China. 

The White House said Biden and Sunak agreed on the importance of working together to support Ukraine and hold Russia accountable for its aggression. Sunak has promised Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that the United Kingdom’s support for Ukraine will be steadfast, and as strong as ever under his leadership. 

The U.K. has been a key European ally of the U.S. in arming and supporting the Ukrainian military in order to repel the Russian invasion. 

Biden and Sunak also discussed China. They agreed to “address the challenges posed by China.” The White House believes China to be the biggest geopolitical and economic rival on the world stage. Downing Street said that the two countries will make coordinated efforts to “counter China’s malign influence” and to enhance regional stability. 

Sunak inherits from his predecessor Liz Truss a looming economic crisis. Biden has recently publicly criticized Truss’s doomed economic strategy, marking a rare intervention by the U.S. president. 

Relations between the U.S. and the United Kingdom have been somewhat more strained over recent years amid tensions over Brexit, including the post-Brexit arrangements in Northern Ireland. The issue was another one that the two leaders addressed in the call, agreeing on the need to ensure the people of Northern Ireland have security and prosperity by preserving the Good Friday Agreement. 

Biden and Sunak are expected to meet in person at the G20 Summit in Indonesia in November.

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