Delivered by H.E. Ambassador Lana Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative

Thank you, Mr. President. The referenda held over the last week amidst the ongoing armed conflict and the announcement made earlier today regarding the incorporation of four regions into the Russian Federation are serious developments in this conflict. They make finding a peaceful resolution more difficult, and they implicate the territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence of a UN member state. These are core principles of the United Nations Charter, central to the peaceful, cooperative, and productive relations between States, and essential for the security and stability of all. These principles protect all States, large and small, powerful and weak, and this has informed our vote today.

The principle of self-determination is also a fundamental principle enshrined in the Charter we all ratified. But any tensions between this principle and the principles of territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence need not amount to a zero-sum game.

The developments of the last days warrant a clear statement from the Council underlining the importance of the fundamental principles of the Charter. We have voted in favour of the resolution for that reason, although we would have also liked more time to engage in further edits to the text and on the substance.

But as we have continuously stressed in this chamber, the pathway towards a peaceful resolution of this conflict lies in solutions that involve both sides coming to the table quickly, without preconditions, and with the support of trusted interlocutors. We urge both Russia and Ukraine to do so, and I know many around this table today, and outside, share in this view.

This war has gone on too long and destroyed too many lives. Resolving this conflict is important not only for Ukraine and Russia, and both their peoples, but also for global peace and security. We need to all stop escalation and help create the conditions for peace.

We stand ready to work with all members of this Council to find ways to effectively address the root causes of this conflict and to support a diplomatic pathway forward. Thank you.