I know many people across our area have, like me, been watching the situation in Ukraine unfold with real sadness, frustration and utter dismay.

The situation is an extremely worrying one, and I continue to worry about the impact of the conflict on people living in Ukraine.

Let me be clear though. Vladimir Putin’s attacks are unprovoked and utterly unjustifiable.

His actions have already had horrendous and tragic consequences and I know they will continue to have far-reaching consequences for many years to come.

Putin’s regime, and his actions, have violated international law, and the global community should not stand by and watch while innocent lives are torn to shreds.

I am clear that all those who believe in the triumph of democracy over dictatorship, good over evil, freedom over the jackboot of tyranny must now support the Ukrainian people.

They have been cast onto the frontline of a war, simply for existing, and they have my full and unwavering support.

I will continue to stand united with our NATO and western allies to support the implementation of the hardest possible sanctions against Putin’s regime – this absolutely cannot continue.

I would urge you, if you are in a situation to help, to find out more here: https://donate.redcross.org.uk/appeal/ukraine-crisis-appeal

And to keep up to date with the latest developments, please visit: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60517447

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