Defense Secretary Ben Wallace is returning to the UK from a family holiday early because of his concerns about “the worsening situation in Ukraine”.
The cabinet minister and Conservative MP for Wyre and Preston North only arrived in the undisclosed European country on Saturday, having traveled there following diplomatic talks in Moscow.
But he said on Sunday that he had canceled a “planned long weekend abroad with my family” because “we are concerned about the worsening situation in Ukraine”.
It is understood Mr Wallace’s wife and children are continuing with the holiday and that he had accepted he would be leaving the trip alone early before heading there, rather than the decision coming in light of new information.
A senior defense source said: “As events worsen, the Secretary of State has cut short a planned long weekend with his children for half-term.”
The decision is markedly different from the one made last year by Dominic Raab, who, as a foreign secretary, stayed on a family holiday in Crete as the Taliban were marching back to power in Afghanistan.
Mr Wallace has warned it is “highly likely” Russian President Vladimir Putin will order an attack despite the concerted talks to avert war.
The defense secretary compared diplomatic efforts to prevent an invasion of Ukraine to the unsuccessful 1938 appeasement of Adolf Hitler.
Referring to the agreement that allowed German annexation of the Sudetenland in 1938 but failed to prevent the Second World War, Mr Wallace said there is a “whiff of Munich in the air”.
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