Remarks at a Third Committee Interactive Dialogue with the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine

Ambassador Elizabeth Millard
U.S. Senior Adviser for European Affairs
New York, New York
October 25, 2023


Thank you, Commissioner.

Your paper documents the pain inflicted by Russia upon Ukraine’s people. Your independent reporting contributes to our collective understanding of the widespread human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law taking place. We cannot turn a blind eye or stay silent.

We have read, in horror, the accounts of Russia’s separation of Ukraine’s children from their families. The forced deportation of Ukrainian civilians to Russia, including children, is not random or spontaneous; it is part Kremlin’s widespread and systematic attack against Ukraine’s civilian population – an attack designed not merely to annex Ukraine’s sovereign territory, but to wipe out its national identity.

We are also profoundly troubled by the vast scale and severity of the environmental damage caused by Russia’s war of choice. We will continue to support Ukraine in building its capacity to investigate and prosecute possible war crimes involving the environment.

The United States condemns Russia’s invasion and the abuses of Ukraine’s people at the hands of Russia’s officials, occupation authorities, and soldiers. We demand accountability and will continue to work with other Member States toward a just, lasting peace.

Our questions is, how can the international community support accountability for the types of war crimes involving the environment cited in your report?