UK PM Boris Johnson made a surprise visit – well, a surprise visit to the general public anyway – to Kyiv last week on Ukrainian Independence Day. It also happened to be the six-month anniversary of the Russian invasion of 24 February.
He was welcomed as a bit of a returning hero, and for obvious reasons. Arguably he has been the politician who has led the rest of the west, including the USA, in supporting Ukraine in its struggles. Some countries have proved more enthusiastic in following his and the UK’s lead, others less so.
In absolute terms the USA has provided the most support. Definitive figures are hard to come by, but US aid would appear to be in the region of $10 million to date, with more promised. The UK has provided about a quarter of that, not including training provided in the UK to Ukrainian personnel, and lies second in the table of benefactors.
However, if you look at it in relative terms, as a percentage of a country’s GDP for example, then the UK lies sixth and the USA seventh of the list. Their efforts are surpassed by the Baltic states, Poland, and believe it or not, Norway. In the meantime, fears that Russia would mount some spectacular event to coincide with Ukrainian Independence Day proved to be unfounded.