What did Sunak sign in Kyiv?
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak recently signed a bilateral security agreement with Ukraine, effective until Ukraine's NATO accession
However, the key details remain unclear: there's no mention of "security guarantees'' in the agreement (and who would give them in a war against a crazy non-negotiating nuclear state). In fact, it is not even about "assurances'' (reminiscent of the infamous Budapest memorandum), although Sunak pointedly used the term "assurances" during the press conference, contrasting with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy's overly optimistic use of the word "guarantees."
In reality, the officially published document focuses on "security cooperation" and "security assistance."
So, why do Ukrainian media and officials talk happily about "security guarantees''? According to this document, Britain promises us military support (but precisely "support" - therefore, the main efforts must be ours, Great Britain will not shoulder our burden). It’s about British commitments to military, financial, and consulting support until Ukraine joins NATO. The term "guarantees" is notably absent.
Essentially, this agreement reaffirms Britain's ongoing support, including financial aid, weapons, technology, military training, and intelligence sharing.
However, direct military protection from Britain is not on the table – Dmitry Medvedev already wrote that it would be seen as a declaration of war against Russia. Hence, joining NATO remains our primary security option, with the specifics of conditions and territory to be worked out.
Let's take off the rose-colored glasses, let's cancel the fireworks: no one is offering us security guarantees. Everything that we get, we will get first of all by ourselves.
About the author. Oleksiy Holobutsky, political scientist
The editors do not always share the opinions expressed by the blog authors.