Boris Johnson dines with Donald Trump to shore up support for Ukraine
Boris Johnson met Donald Trump on a visit to the United States this week as he sought to shore up support for Ukraine.
As well as Mr Trump, who the former prime minister reportedly had dinner with on Thursday, Mr Johnson also met other Republicans including Mike Pompeo, the former secretary of state.
The two former leaders discussed “the situation in Ukraine and the vital importance of Ukrainian victory” this week, a spokesman for Mr Johnson said.
Mr Johnson has been a staunch ally of Ukraine, repeatedly urging Western countries to do more to support Kyiv.
At a CNN town hall earlier this month, Mr Trump refused to say whether Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, is a war criminal, or who he wanted to win in the conflict, saying only that he wants “everybody to stop dying”.
As president, Mr Trump had a close relationship with the man he once called “Britain Trump”, reportedly going so far as to give Mr Johnson his personal mobile phone number.
But their friendship appears to have soured recently, after Mr Trump accused Mr Johnson’s government of lurching towards the “far left” over its support for renewable energy projects
“They really weren’t staying Conservative,” he told GB News last month.
US support for sending weapons falls
US support for sending weapons to Ukraine has suffered a sharp year-on-year decline, a new poll has found.
Just 50 per cent of Americans said in April that they strongly favoured or favoured the US sending weapons to Ukraine, compared with 61 per cent last year.
Public support for economic sanctions against Russia has also dropped, the poll from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and NORC at the University of Chicago found, as well as the acceptance of Ukrainian refugees.
The only support that did not drop was for sending government funds to Ukraine rather than weapons.
Despite this, the majority of Americans, totalling 70 per cent, disapproved of Russia’s invasion.
Approval was split along political lines. Around 80 per cent of Democrats said they were against Russia’s actions in Ukraine, compared to 69 per cent of Republicans, according to the Harris School of Public Policy.
A number of Republicans are pushing for US aid to Kyiv to cease. Presidential candidates Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump have appeared lukewarm on military support for Ukraine, with neither seeing the war as a vital interest for the US.
Mr DeSantis has said that he does not want to see US troops involved and that there is not “sufficient interest for us to escalate more involvement”.
At a CNN town hall earlier this month, Mr Trump refused to say whether Vladimir Putin is a war criminal, or who he wanted to win in the conflict.
Experts said that the findings highlight a divide between Americans’ principles and what they are willing to fund economically.
Despite a vast majority of Americans uniting in their negative view of Russia’s invasion, the vital question is whether they are “willing to send the tax dollars or send significant portions of U.S. resources to the Ukrainians to undermine these Russian efforts,” Sibel Oktay, a nonresident senior fellow of public opinion and foreign policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, told the New York Times.
The results indicate that Americans could view the conflict as less important to their national interests compared to last year, she added.
The overriding concern for the White House since Feb 24 last year has been to avoid direct combat between US and Russian forces.
But Joe Biden, the US president, has been steadfast in his support for Ukraine and has pledged that the country will “never be a victory” for Putin, repeatedly vowing to help until the end