Deputy Political Counselor
New York, New York
July 31, 2023
Thank you, Mr. President. And thank you, Mr. Gregorian, for your briefing. We regret that this meeting called by Russia today makes a mockery of UNOCT’s important work countering terrorism, and that Russia continues to abuse its position on the Council to lie, distract, and mislead.
Mr. President, listening to Russia’s remarks today, some might be confused about who is the aggressor and who is the victim.
Since the beginning of Russia’s brutal full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the international community has been clear. Over 140 countries have repeatedly condemned the Russian Federation for its aggression against Ukraine and demanded that Russia withdraw its military forces from Ukraine’s internationally-recognized territory.
We’ve listened carefully to Russia’s remarks, and it’s clear that its efforts to divert the Council’s attention from the core issues at hand are a transparent ploy to distract from its own aggression.
Over the weekend, Russia again resorted to irresponsible nuclear rhetoric. Russia also announced the stationing of tactical nuclear weapons in the territory of Belarus, further aggravating an already dangerous situation.
Russia’s complaints about the impacts of a war it began should remind us all of a simple truth. This war would end today if Russia withdrew its forces from Ukraine’s sovereign territory and abandoned its relentless, brutal attacks against Ukraine’s cities and civilian infrastructure.
Until that day comes, the United States will continue to offer our full support for Ukraine’s self-defense, and for the principles of the UN Charter.