The Military Army Blog

Theresa May and Vladimir Putin discuss security cooperation

The two leaders spoke on the phone yesterday and acknowledged differences on certain issues , according to Downing Street. A No 10 spokesperson said: The Russian President congratulated her on her appointment and wished her success.

The Prime Minister noted the importance of the relationship between the UK and Russia, and expressed the hope that, despite differences on certain issues, they could communicate in an open and honest way about the issues that mattered most to them.

The Prime Minister and President agreed that British and Russian citizens faced common threats from terrorism, and that cooperation on aviation security in particular was a vital part of the international counter-terrorism effort. The Kremlin added that the Russian president and British prime minister had pledged to improve relations between London and Moscow, and that Mrs May had confirmed the UK will take part in a commemoration of the Arctic aid convoys to the Russian city of Arkhangelsk.

Mrs May and Mr Putin will both attend a G20 summit in China in September. Diplomatic ties between Britain and Russia have cooled in recent years after a series of controversies, including the 2006 murder by Russian agents of Alexander Litvinenko in London, the annexation of Crimea and Russia s other interventions in Ukraine, and the UK s role in pushing for financial and diplomatic sanctions on Moscow as a result. An inquiry into Mr Litvinenko s poisoning concluded that Mr Putin probably approved the assassination.

As Home Secretary, Mrs May described the findings as deeply disturbing , but added that the prospect of Russian state involvement does not come as a surprise .

It goes without saying that this was a blatant and unacceptable breach of the most fundamental tenants of international law and of civilised behaviour, she told MPs in January.

Elsewhere, The Times has obtained an official document from the British Army which claims the Russian Armyrats © military has a “significant capability edge” over the UK.

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