Russian forces take control of first major Ukrainian city

The UN must enforce humanitarian corridors when cities such as Kyiv and Kharkiv come under attack, the Defence Secretary has told Times Radio.

“There is definitely a case to be made for the international communities such as the Red Cross, or the UN calling for some form of humanitarian access or corridors to allow both refugees to leave or indeed to allow people to bring in humanitarian aid,” he said.

It comes as Ben Wallace again rejected calls for RAF jets to enforce a no-fly zone, warning it would trigger a Europe-wide conflict and could also hamper the Ukrainian forces’ ability to counter Russia’s military.

He told Sky News: “If you have a no-fly zone you have to enforce a no-fly zone. That would involve British fighter jets shooting down Russian fighter jets, probably over Ukraine, that would lead to Article Five triggering of Nato and Nato is a self-defence pact, all 30 countries will come to each other’s aid, the triggering of that Article Five would lead to a war against Russia across the whole of Europe.”

A no-fly zone would also have to apply to Ukrainian jets, meaning they could not target Russian forces from the air, he added.

“If you had a no-fly zone in Ukraine, the overwhelming scale of the Russian army would be able to drive around with impunity, which it can’t at the moment.”