Boris Johnson warns UK to prepare for 'Russian retaliation' following Syria strike 3 years ago

Boris Johnson warns UK to prepare for 'Russian retaliation' following Syria strike

It comes after British forces joined the US and France in air strikes in Syria.

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has said the UK must take “every possible precaution” to protect itself from Russian retaliation in the aftermath of coalition air strikes in Syria.

Advertisement

Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr, he claimed that Moscow had a history of launching cyber attacks on infrastructure and interfering in the democratic processes of other countries.

Reports this morning have suggested that British intelligence bosses fear Russia could retaliate to Western military action using cyber attacks and political smears.

Responding to these concerns, Mr Johnson said: ”You have to take every possible precaution, and when you look at what Russia has done, not just in this country, in Salisbury, attacks on TV stations, on the democratic processes, on critical national infrastructure – of course we have to be very, very cautious indeed.

“But I want to stress, we in the UK do not seek an escalation, absolutely not.”

Advertisement

It comes after the US, UK and France launched air strikes against alleged Syrian chemical weapons facilities overnight Friday, following a chemical weapons attack in a Damascus suburb a week ago.

More than 100 armaments, bombs, and ship-launched cruise missiles, were deployed in the attack.

The attack brought the West at odds with Russia, that has backed Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the country's ongoing civil war.

Yesterday, Vladimir Putin's Russian ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, described the bombings as an 'insult' to the president.

Writing on Twitter, Antonov said: "A pre-designed scenario is being implemented again, we are being threatened. We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences.

Advertisement

"Insulting the President of Russia is unacceptable and inadmissible. The US - the possessor of the biggest arsenal of chemical weapons - has no moral right to blame other countries."