The world is calling for peace but Russia is not listening: UK statement to the UN Security Council

Mr President,

I thank the Secretary-General and Under-Secretary-General DiCarlo for their remarks.

We are here tonight to call on Russia to avert war.

For months, Russia has been holding a gun to Ukraine’s head. Now, President Putin’s finger is on the trigger.

A full-scale conflict in a country of 44 million people will bring immense suffering, casualties on both sides and devastating humanitarian consequences.

The members of this Council, the General Assembly, and the Secretary-General have all called this week for respect for the principles of the UN Charter.

The world is calling for peace. But Russia is not listening.

Mr President,

Make no mistake, the UK will not compromise:

We will not compromise our commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity;

And our support for peace, prosperity, and the democratic freedom of the people of Ukraine.

We will not compromise our commitment to the purpose and principles of the UN Charter. Above all, the founding principle of this United Nations, that we “live together in peace with one another as good neighbours”.

Russia’s actions are an assault on the Charter.

And, we will not compromise our commitment to a search for peace.

We are here for the second time this week in the Council.

My Prime Minister and Foreign and Defence Secretaries have been unsparing in their diplomatic efforts.

But we have also announced a significant further sanction step against Russia, with our allies.

A package targeted against some of the Russian oligarchs, banks, and politicians supporting President Putin.

And we will ratchet up economic consequences should Russia continue its aggression.

There is still time for restraint, reason and de-escalation. But that time is now.

Thank you.

Additional remarks by Ambassador Woodward at the close of the meeting:

As we sat in this Chamber urging Russia to step back, President Putin announced special military operations on Ukrainian territory.

This is unprovoked and unjustified. This is a grave day for Ukraine and for the principles of the United Nations.

We and our partners have been clear that there will be consequences for Russia’s actions. We fully support the United States call for a UN Security Council resolution. This Council must do all it can to stop war and uphold the Charter.

Thank you.

Published 24 February 2022

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