Boris and Biden say Europe must move to reduce reliance on Russian gas in emergency call

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The Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks from No10 Downing Street. Picture by Andrew Parsons / No 10 Downing Street.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke to the President of the United States of America, Joe Biden, this evening in an emergency call as the leaders brace for Moscow to invade Ukraine.

The call comes as satellite images show Russia has surrounded Ukraine on three sides, with more than 100,000 troops amassed at the border, but has always denied that an invasion is planned.

The Prime Minister said this morning:

“We are on the edge of a precipice. The signs, as you’ve heard from President Biden that they’re at least planning for something that could take place as early as in the next 48 hours.

“That is extremely concerning.”

The Prime Minister and President Biden updated one another on their recent discussions with fellow world leaders and agreed there remained a crucial window for diplomacy and for Russia to step back from its threats towards Ukraine.

The leaders emphasised that any further incursion into Ukraine would result in a protracted crisis for Russia, with far reaching damage for both Russia and the world.

They agreed that western allies must remain united in the face of Russian threats, including imposing a significant package of sanctions should Russian aggression escalate.

The two leaders also reiterated the need for European countries to reduce their dependence on Russian gas, a move which, more than any other, would strike at the heart of Russia’s strategic interests.

Nord Stream 2, a 750-miles pipeline connecting Russia and Germany, has led to divisions in how the West has responded to the threat posed by Moscow to Kiev. 

The Prime Minister and President Biden agreed to remain in close contact as the situation evolves.

More to follow.

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