On February 20, 2014, the Russian Federation launched the
military aggression against the sovereign state of Ukraine.
Three years have passed since the treacherous attack by the
neighbouring state, despite its commitment to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and
independence, as well as its status of one of the guarantors of security and
territorial integrity of Ukraine according to the 1994 Budapest
Although the Revolution of Dignity clearly reconfirmed the
aspirations of the Ukrainian people to build European, democratic and
prosperous Ukraine, the Kremlin responded by attempting to deprive Ukrainians
of the right to define their future by their own. Russia launched a
well-planned military operation, which resulted in the temporary occupation of
the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol as well as in
bloodshed in Donbas.
Thereby Russia has challenged the value-based world order in
a try to revive the geopolitical thinking of the past with domination of the
rule of force and spheres of influence.
The appalling number of victims highlights the immorality of
Kremlin’s war against the Ukrainian people: over 9 800 Ukrainian people were
killed, about 23 000 wounded and almost 1.8 million of internally displaced
persons. 7.2 % of Ukrainian territory has been seized by Russia and millions of
the citizens of Ukraine live there under occupation and endless terror.
Russia persists in sending new fighters, weaponry and ammunition to Ukraine
through the section of the Ukrainian-Russian state border of 409.7 km long,
which remains out of control of the Ukrainian government.
Occupied Crimea, closed for any form of international
control and monitoring, is now an area for systemic violation of human rights
and fundamental freedoms, targeting, first of all, the Ukrainian activists and
the indigenous people of Crimea - Crimean Tatars. The citizens of Ukraine are
being groundlessly detained and imprisoned, activists are being disappeared,
their families and friends are facing intimidation. The Mejlis,
a representative body of the Crimean Tatar people, was banned.
Russia continues to fuel the conflict in Donbas, sends
regular troops and mercenaries to the territory, which is out of control by the
Ukrainian Government, and keeps reinforcing its militants and terrorists with
the sophisticated weaponry and military hardware.
Russia remains unwilling to implement the Minsk Agreements
thus undermining all efforts taken by Ukraine and the international community
towards de-escalation and stabilization in the region. Moscow’s propaganda has
no limits to lie, falsification and doublespeak. Human life has no value for
the aggressor. Besides their actions in Ukraine, the Russian structures were
regularly spotted interfering in the internal affairs of other sovereign
states. The aggressive policy of the Russian Federation pose
a threat for the entire world order.
We are grateful to all partners for their strong support and
solidarity. By adopting the UN General Assembly Resolutions “Territorial
integrity of Ukraine” and “'Situation of human rights in the Autonomous
Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine)” the world has clearly
said “no” to violation of territorial integrity and sovereignty of an independent
state, condemned the occupant and reconfirmed its human rights commitments.
Personal and economic sanctions have been a powerful demonstration of the unity
of purpose of the world leading countries in response to the outrage and
defiance of international law by the aggressor state.
The only dignified response by the international community,
which has no alternative, will be maintaining solidarity with Ukraine in
countering the Russian aggression by strengthening political, diplomatic and
economic pressure on the aggressor state. Russia must fully implement its own
commitments on peaceful resolution of the conflict in Donbas as a signatory of
the Minsk Agreements, put an immediate end to violation of human rights and
fundamental freedoms in the occupied territories, release all hostages and
political prisoners, de-occupy the Crimean peninsula.
It is only Russia’s return to the tenets of international law that will ensure
peace and stability on the European continent and will lift the threat of chaos
and domination of force in the international relations.