Watch: Boris Johnson thanks Putin for 'leadership'. He meant Ukraine's Zelensky

Updated on Sep 23, 2022 01:53 PM IST

Boris Johnson: The slip-up came as Boris Johnson talked about Ukraine's effort against Moscow's invasion of Kyiv.

Boris Johnson: Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson.(AFP)
Boris Johnson: Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson.(AFP)

Former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson mistakenly thanked Russia President Vladimir Putin for his "inspirational leadership" instead of Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky during a House of commons debate on Thursday.

The slip-up came as Boris Johnson talked about Ukraine's effort against Moscow's invasion of Kyiv. Boris Johnson said it is important to "double down in our defence of the Ukrainians" as Putin called for partial mobilisation which is being viewed as an escalation by the West.

Listing Ukraine's successes Boris Johnson inadvertently thanked Vladimir Putin, before quickly correcting himself and thanking Ukraine's Zelensky.

Read more: Watch| At UN, Blinken's strong message to Putin on Ukraine: ‘If Russia stops…’

Boris Johnson said, "Thanks to the heroism of the Ukrainian armed forces, thanks in part to the weapons that we are proud to be offering, I congratulate my right honourable friend (James Heappey) on his description of the work of the UK armed forces, the weapons that we're sending, the huge list... Thanks also, of course, to the inspirational leadership of Vladimir Putin."

Watch the video here:

Immediately realising his mistake, Boris Johnson added, “The inspirational leadership of Volodymyr Zelenskyy, forgive me, the Russian forces have, in recent days been expelled from large parts of the north-east of the country around Kharkiv.”

Boris Johnson also said the UK must be prepared to give "more military assistance" and economic support to Kyiv amid Russian invasion.

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