| 24 July 2024, Wednesday |

Ukraine’s ambassador to Britain sacked after criticizing Zelenskyy

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy took the decision to dismiss the country’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, Vadym Prystaiko, on Friday. The dismissal came after Prystaiko publicly criticized President Zelenskyy’s response to a dispute concerning British military aid to Ukraine. The situation highlights tensions within the Ukrainian government over how to handle foreign assistance and underscores the importance of maintaining a unified approach in diplomatic matters.
Prystaiko had criticized Zelenskyy’s sarcastic response to suggestions from British defense minister Ben Wallace that Ukraine should show more gratitude for arms supplies from its allies.

Zelenskyy signed a decree dismissing Prystaiko, published on the presidential website. It did not provide a reason.
The row began when Wallace told journalists at a NATO summit in Vilnius this month that Britain was not an Amazon delivery service for weapons to Ukraine and suggested Kyiv could express more “gratitude.”

The UK is a major donor of weapons to Ukraine and also trains its troops.

Zelenskyy responded at a press conference at the summit, saying he did not know how else to make clear Ukraine’s gratitude, adding: “We could wake up in the morning and express our words of gratitude to the minister personally.”

The Ukrainian diplomat agreed with a suggestion from a Sky News interviewer that Zelenskyy responded with “a little bit of sarcasm” to Wallace.

“I don’t believe that this sarcasm is healthy. We don’t have to show the Russians that we have something between us, they have to know that we are working together,” Prystaiko added, stressing the need to smooth over relations with the UK.

“If anything happens, Ben can call me and tell me everything he wants,” the diplomat said.

Prystaiko is a career diplomat who has served as ambassador to the United Kingdom since July 2020. He was previously Ukraine’s foreign minister from 2019 to 2020.

  • alarabiya