Andrei Kelin was accused of ‘spouting Kremlin propaganda’ to the Foreign Secretary (Picture: PA/Getty)
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss is understood to have ejected Russia’s ambassador from a meeting after he began ‘spouting propaganda’ about his country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Andrei Kelin had been summoned to Whitehall for the second time in a week after Vladimir Putin launched a full-scale assault which went onto kill 57 people on its first day.
In what was described as a ‘very grumpy meeting’, Ms Truss accused Russia of having ‘repeatedly lied’ over its intentions and said it faced ‘severe sanctions’.
Russia launched a barrage of missile strikes and ground attacks on Thursday, dressed up as retaliation for what western intelligence agencies have dismissed as ‘false flag’ attacks alleged to have been carried out by Ukrainian forces on pro-Russian separatists.
The invasion, also left 169 wounded, has been described as the largest conventional military attack since the Second World War.
A Foreign Office record of the meeting states: ‘The Foreign Secretary said the Russian government had repeatedly lied about having no plans to invade Ukraine, and its unprovoked aggression had made it an international pariah.
‘She condemned Russia’s outrageous attack on Ukraine as a clear breach of international law.
‘She reiterated there would be severe sanctions in retribution for the invasion, which will inflict pain on the Russian economy and those closely associated with the Kremlin.’
Mr Kelin was seen hurrying into Whitehall on Tuesday morning (Picture: PA)
Mr Putin initially claimed his intentions in the region were to protect supposedly peaceful pro-Russian separatists from attacks by Ukrainian forces.
But he later declared two areas controlled by the separatists as independent republics and ramped up his rhetoric, going so far as to repeating discredited claims that Ukraine has no history as a ‘real country’.
A source at the department said: ‘Liz kicked [Mr Kelin] out after he started spouting the Kremlin’s incredulous propaganda lines.
‘She said the international community will stand by Ukraine and that Russia has made itself an international pariah.’
Ms Truss reportedly told the ambassador ‘he should be ashamed of himself’ (Picture: Reuters)
Another source told Sky News he was ‘kicked out early’, adding that Ms Truss ‘said he should be ashamed of himself, that Russia has lied repeatedly and lost its last shred of credibility with the international community.’
A senior US defence official said: ‘We haven’t seen a conventional move like this, nation-state to nation-state, since World War II, certainly nothing on this size and scope and scale.
‘And if it unfolds the way that hereto we have come to believe that it will, it has every potential to be very bloody, very costly and very impactful on European security writ large, perhaps for a long, long time to come.’
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