Delivered by: Ambassador Mohamed Abushahab, Deputy Permanent Representative

Thank you, Mr. President.

I’d like to thank High Representative Nakamitsu for her informative briefing.

The conflict in Ukraine has shattered the lives of its citizens and heightened geopolitical tensions to levels not seen since the Cold War era.

The countless lives lost and the worsening humanitarian crisis underscore the urgent need for de-escalation. These same realities also call for a re-evaluation of actions that may further exacerbate tensions.

The war has forced the international community to confront the dangers and complexities associated with nuclear weapons, inactive nuclear material, and armed conflict at and near the site of a nuclear power plant. The international community has deep concerns about the potential for accidents and miscalculation amidst growing tensions and intensifying conflict.

On their own, such activities pose significant risks. Taken together, they perpetuate a dangerously escalatory cycle with potentially unfathomable repercussions. Accordingly, responsible states need not limit themselves to parsing the legality of each individual action when it is the sum total of these actions that brings us ever closer to a nuclear catastrophe.

We must exercise prudence and caution. Sixty years ago, the world waited with bated breath as the Cuban Missile Crisis brought the world to the brink of nuclear war. The leaders of the countries involved took the decision to engage in dialogue to resolve the stand-off. These decisions also created the conditions for the signing of the world’s first nuclear treaty.

Even today, we know dialogue remains possible. Russia and Ukraine’s recent agreement to extend the Black Sea Grain Initiative illustrates the benefits of such dialogue. The United Arab Emirates reiterates its gratitude to the UN Secretary-General and Türkiye for their tireless efforts. We encourage this same spirit to drive more focused diplomacy in other vital areas, most critically, nuclear safety and security. The UAE stands ready to support such endeavours.

Mr. President,

To go beyond efforts to mitigate the war’s impact and to achieve a sustainable and just peace in Ukraine, we must begin to lay the foundations for the conflict’s resolution. While the Council regularly convenes to address the situation in Ukraine, the only certain way to halt this escalation and prevent tragedy is to find an end to this war.

The risks that have us convening today testify to the international community’s urgent interest in that outcome.

Thank you, Mr. President.