Виступ делегації України на засіданні РБ ООН щодо Південного Судану

Mr. President,

The issue of the arms embargo has been the subject of intense debate in recent months. While it is a matter of urgency, some delegations continuously advocate second-chance diplomacy.

Ukraine is all in favor of using diplomacy as a primary path towards resolution of the conflict in South Sudan. However, we have a couple of simple questions:

How many more second chances should the parties in South Sudan be given to stop deliberate killing of civilians, rape of women and girls, and incitement to ethnic violence? How many more towns and villages must be burned before this Council reaches a consensus on a further action?

South Sudan is on the verge of chaos. The conflict has touched almost every South Sudanese family, ruining hopes for a peaceful future.

To give you just one example – the town of Yei in the southwest. It was considered one of the safest places in South Sudan. Not anymore.

Once bustling streets deserted. Schools and hospitals closed. Stores and markets looted. Government soldiers patrolling the neighborhoods with Kalashnikovs in hands. No-go zones controlled by rebels. More than half of the town’s population has fled, and those who remain live in fear of being murdered, raped, arrested or disappeared.

Is this something that the international community chooses to tolerate in the 21st century? Are we ready to ignore yet another looming human tragedy that, if not stopped, can lead to irreparable consequences?

The answer is obvious. We must not let the South Sudanese people share the grief of Srebrenica, Rwanda or Aleppo.

Having this in mind, Ukraine voted in favor of the draft resolution. We are fully conscious that it would not be a solution in itself. However, we are convinced that the arms embargo and additional targeted sanctions would reduce the ability of the parties to continue fueling the conflict in South Sudan. It will help to silence the already procured military equipment and to stop spending desperately needed financial resources for new weaponry.

The arms embargo is not a punishment, but a tool for peace. We regret that this Council was not able to use it.

I thank you, Mr. President.