Mr Chair, I wish to make some additional remarks in my national capacity to supplement the joint statement delivered by Canada on behalf of 45 participating States, including the UK.
The United Kingdom strongly supports the joint decision to invoke the Moscow Mechanism. We have grave concerns about the humanitarian impacts of Russia’s invasion and the potential for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
We mentioned in our statement earlier today just some of the many heinous incidents that have already occurred since the start of Russia’s unprovoked, premeditated and entirely unjustifiable invasion.
We spoke of the Russian government’s disproportionate and indiscriminate attacks on civilian areas. The bombardment of Ukrainian villages, towns and cities. The use of heavy artillery in densely populated areas causing civilian casualties. A number of these attacks have also affected critical civilian infrastructure. The schools and kindergartens which have been damaged, and residential buildings which have been destroyed. The horrific loss of civilian life.
Mr Chair, The actions Russia has chosen to take in Ukraine is having severe and far-reaching consequences. It is important that the mission that is being invoked today establishes the facts and circumstances of what Russia is unleashing on Ukraine, and that information or documentation derived from that mission is delivered to other appropriate accountability mechanisms, as well as national, regional, or international courts or tribunals that have, or may in the future have, jurisdiction.
Mr Chair, Russia will be held to account for its actions.