Russian invasion a ‘permanent stain’ on Putin’s reputation – Angus Robertson

The Scottish External Affairs Secretary wrote to the Russian ambassador to the UK to spell out his opposition to the invasion.

26 February 2022

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has “no conceivable justification” and will leave a “permanent stain” on the reputation of President Vladimir Putin’s regime, Scotland’s External Affairs Secretary has said.

Angus Robertson has written to the Russian ambassador to the UK, Andrei Kelin, to make clear that the Scottish Government condemns the “unprovoked invasion of a peaceful, democratic neighbour in the strongest possible terms”.

In his letter Mr Robertson suggested there should be an “immediate cessation of Russia’s aggression” as he called for troops to be withdrawn from Ukraine immediately.

Mr Robertson spoke out as the UK pledged it would continue to supply arms to Ukraine’s embattled military, as fighting with Russian forces reached the outskirts of the capital Kyiv.

The Russian attack, which started in the early hours of Thursday, has already sparked a series of demonstrations in Scotland, with more planned for over the weekend.

Mr Robertson was clear that Russia’s “illegal act of aggression has no conceivable justification”.

He told Mr Kelin: “I reject wholeheartedly the premise of the invasion as stated by President Putin.

“I deplore the loss of life, including civilian lives, which is the direct responsibility of the Russian regime.”

Protestors gathered outside the Russian Consulate in Edinburgh (Lesley Martin/PA)

He added that Scotland offered its “unqualified support for Ukrainian sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity”.

Mr Robertson continued: “Our capital city Edinburgh is twinned with Kyiv, and our country is home to several thousand Ukrainians who are valued and welcome members of our communities.

“Scotland is also home to many Russians, whom we value equally. They are our friends, family, co-workers and neighbours.

“Our quarrel is not with the people of Russia, nor the Russian community who live and work in Scotland, but with President Putin’s regime and its deplorable actions.

“Mr Ambassador, history will judge this week’s events as a permanent stain on this Russian government’s reputation.

“The international community stands united against such aggression, and Scotland stands with the international community.”

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