British Prime Minister Slams Putin, Hails Queen In Debut UN Speech

New British Prime Minister Liz Truss has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of making “sabre-rattling threats” to cover his failed invasion of Ukraine, as she told the United Nations that its founding principles were fracturing because of aggression by authoritarian states.

In her debut speech to the UN general assembly on Wednesday night (local time), Truss called the war in Ukraine a battle for “our values and the security of the whole world”, and extolled the late Queen Elizabeth II as a symbol of everything the UN stands for.

Responding to a statement from Putin that he was mobilising reservists and would use everything at his disposal to protect Russia – an apparent reference to his nuclear arsenal –Truss accused the Russian leader of “desperately trying to justify his catastrophic failures”.

“He is doubling down by sending even more reservists to a terrible fate,” she said. “He is desperately trying to claim the mantle of democracy for a regime without human rights or freedoms. And he is making yet more bogus claims and sabre-rattling threats.

“This will not work. The international alliance is strong – Ukraine is strong,” said Truss, who addressed the UN on the same day Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke to the global gathering by video.

In a speech outlining her view of foreign policy in a world turned upside down by Russia’s invasion, Truss spoke of the Queen, whose funeral was attended by many of the world leaders now gathered at the United Nations.

She said the Queen “symbolised the postwar values on which this organisation was founded”. She said the monarch, who died this month after 70 years on the throne, “transcended difference and healed division”.

Truss referred to a speech to the UN by the Queen in 1957, in which Elizabeth said “the peoples of the world expect the United Nations to persevere in its efforts” to end conflict and crisis