Aug. 21 (UPI) -- British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt will urge the European Union Tuesday to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with the United States in backing sanctions on Russia for its transgressions.
"Aggressive and malign behavior undermines the international order that keeps us safe. Of course, we must engage with Moscow, but we must also be blunt: Russia's foreign policy under President Putin has made the world a more dangerous place," Hunt will say, based on a prepared statement.
Pointing to incidents like the poisoning of former Moscow spy Sergei Skripal in March and the 2014 annexation of Crimea, Hunt will say the EU should call out and respond to Russian transgressions, excerpts from the speech show.
"Only by working together can like-minded, free, democratic states like [Britain] and the U.S. maintain our collective economic and diplomatic strength, fundamental to ensuring that our values and freedoms are defended for decades more to come."
Russian leaders issued a stern rebuttal this month to U.S. sanctions in the Skripal case. Moscow has denied it was responsible.
Skripal, 66, and daughter Yulia, 33, were critically ill for weeks after coming into contact with a Soviet-era nerve agent in Salisbury, Britain. The United States and several Western governments concluded Moscow was behind the attack.
The Russian Embassy in Washington, D.C., said the fiscal penalties are misguided, unwarranted and "draconian." It called the punishment "just another output in the U.S. sanctions' assembly line."
Hunt will also criticize China in his remarks, for not opposing the annexation of Crimea and failing to support measures to strengthen a chemical weapons ban.