Vladimir Putin is “evil”, Boris Johnson said as UK ministers stepped up their personal attacks on the Russian president.
“I think that what he has done is evil,” the Prime Minister told GB News at the Nato summit in Madrid.
Asked if Mr Putin himself was evil, Mr Johnson said: “I think it probably follows that if you are what you do, then certainly.
“It’s been an appalling act of unwarranted aggression against the innocent population.”
His comments come after Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said Mr Putin had “small man syndrome” and was a “lunatic”.
Mr Johnson had earlier suggested the Russian leader’s invasion of Ukraine was an example of “toxic masculinity” and a female president would not have made the same mistake.
Mr Wallace told LBC Radio: “Well I certainly think President Putin’s view of himself and the world is a small man syndrome, macho view.”
He added “you rarely hear the phrase small woman syndrome, you always hear small man syndrome”.
“I think he’s certainly got it in spades,” he said.
“But I think the real challenge here is the Russian system’s view that somehow some states are lesser than others, their rights don’t count. If they want to paint themselves into a new history, they seem to think the way to do that is through violence and invasion.
“And I think that’s something to worry about.”
He also mocked Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.
Mr Wallace said: “To be fair there is that lady, the spokeswoman in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, she’s like a comedy turn, she does her statement every week, threatening to nuke everyone or doing something or another.
“She’s definitely a woman… She’s a lunatic like he is, so I’ll leave it to that.”