Statement by Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the UN Mr. Sergiy Kyslytsya at the UN Security Council Open Debate on peace and security through preventive diplomacy

Statement by Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the UN  Mr. Sergiy Kyslytsya at the UN Security Council Open Debate on peace and security through preventive diplomacy

Mr. President,

Ukraine highly appreciates the initiative of the Mexican Presidency to hold this important debate and expresses its gratitude to briefers for their presentations.

As the concept note rightly points out, the maintenance of international peace and security through preventive diplomacy is an issue at the heart of the work of all UN principal organs.

Insufficient preventive measures in early stages could only encourage an instigator to expand violence in terms of both intensity and geographical scope.

The armed aggression against Ukraine serves as a powerful example. In some countries lack of democracy, no accountability and absence of rule of law make regimes prone to aggression.
Hence, restoring democracy and respect for human rights in those countries are crucial for prevention.

Since 2010 Ukraine has been promoting in the UN Human Rights Council the initiative on the role of prevention of human rights violations. The relevant resolution was approved on our proposal.
I hope that the events like today’s debate will contribute to overcoming a long-standing ideological and even physical separation between human rights issues in Geneva and security issues in New York.

The Security Council should demonstrate a holistic approach in ensuring respect for human rights and responding to their violations as an essential element of efforts to prevent crisis situations and conflicts.

I commend the Presidents of the General Assembly, ECOSOC and International Court of Justice for their commitment to ensure viable contribution of the respective principal organs of the UN to strengthening preventive activities.

Ukraine also believes that the Secretary-General should use more often and more explicitly his authority, envisaged in Article 99, by proposing actionable recommendations to resolve conflicts, to protect civilians and to ensure accountability for serious violations of international humanitarian and human-rights law.

We commend the focus on prevention made in the Report on Our Common Agenda. We are ready to engage in a follow-up process in line with the UN General Assembly resolution, as adopted yesterday. From our point of view, it is critical to explore the preventive diplomacy toolbox for discouraging an instigator from new flare-ups of violence.

Imposing sanctions and other restrictive measures against an aggressor is a legitimate and adequate response aimed at restoring respect for the norms and principles of international law.
It should not be blanketly regarded as illegitimate “coercive unilateral measure”, especially when an aggressor blocks from a permanent seat any preventive actions by the Security Council.
Preventive diplomacy must not lag behind the developments on the ground.

Current situation on the border of the EU with Belarus serves as a test for our ability to ensure efficient prevention. Attempts to weaponize migration pose a serious threat to the entire region and Ukraine may be among the most affected ones. We have no choice but to take additional prevention measures and to reinforce protection of our border as decided by the National Security and Defense Council.

Strong preventive diplomacy is not optional. It is, however, successful if it does deliver practical results. Discussions therefore must be followed by concrete actions to break the cycle of impunity and to hold violators accountable.

Thank you.