Check against delivery.

Mr. President,

At the outset, I would like to thank Ms. Rosemary DiCarlo, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Peacebuilding, Mr. Mikko Kinnunen, Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group, and Mr. Yaşar Halit Çevik, OSCE Special Monitoring Mission Chief Monitor, for their comprehensive briefings. We have also listened to the civil society briefer Ms. Tetiana Montian.

Mr. President,

Mr. President, Since our meeting on January 31, we have seen intensive diplomatic efforts at various levels – including at the highest levels – to reduce the current tensions in Eastern Europe. We also welcome the further engagement within the Normandy Format and hope that these discussions will continue. Such structured formats, particularly those bringing together Russia and Ukraine along with other stakeholders, are important for furthering dialogue and reducing tensions. This would also help us find a sustainable solution that would tackle the security concerns of all parties.

In this regard, the UAE stresses the need to maintain and build momentum, in particular through steps taken by all concerned parties to engage in constructive dialogue in the interest of de-escalation and the maintenance of regional security and stability. We stress the importance of implementing the Minsk agreements in full and in good faith, in line with Security Council Resolution 2202. In this context, we urge all stakeholders to avoid steps that would make implementation of Minsk agreements more difficult.

We also note the important role of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, whose presence supports efforts for dialogue, confidence-building between the parties and contributes to easing tensions.

At the same time, we must pay attention to the critical situation of civilians in eastern Ukraine, where United Nations reports mention that there are 3.4 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, of whom 55 % are women and 16 % children. Furthermore, there are obstacles for the delivery of humanitarian assistance to some of those in need, particularly in areas near the contact line in eastern Ukraine. We therefore emphasize the importance of not escalating existing tensions, as this may cause serious harm to civilians. In this regard, we call upon all parties not to obstruct the access to humanitarian aid or the movement of civilians in conflict areas, in accordance with their obligations under international law.

Finally, we reiterate the importance of respecting international law and the Charter of the United Nations, particularly the principles of territorial integrity, sovereignty, and good neighborliness, as they are essential references for resolving the existing crisis and calming tensions in the region.

In conclusion, Mr. President, the UAE reiterates the importance of constructive dialogue and to continue efforts to reach peaceful solutions consistent with international law and the Charter of the United Nations.

Thank you.