New York: The United Nations Security Council on Friday released its first unanimous statement since the Ukraine–Russia war broke out more than two months ago. The brief Presidential statement was accepted by all member states including permanent member Russia and expresses “deep concern regarding the maintenance of peace and security of Ukraine”, backing Secretary-General Antonio Guterres‘ efforts to find a “peaceful solution” to the war.
It is pertinent to note however that the text adopted by the powerful group makes no explicit mention of “war”, “conflict” or “invasion”. Russia incidentally dubs its efforts in Ukraine a “special military operation” for the ‘denazification’ of the other country.
“Today, for the first time, the Security Council spoke with one voice for peace in Ukraine. As I have often said, the world must come together to silence the guns and uphold the values of the UN Charter. I welcome this support and will continue to spare no effort to save lives, reduce suffering and find the path of peace,” said UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres in a statement on Friday.
The official had recently visited Russia and Ukraine, meeting President Vladimir Putin and President Volodymyr Zelensky on April 26 and 28 respectively.
While the UN General Assembly had adopted a resolution to demand an end to the Russian offensive in Ukraine more than two months ago, the UNSC had found its efforts thwarted. Despite support from the US and other Ukrainian allies, Russia had exercised its veto powers to block any criticism or actions against itself. Indeed in April, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had urged the UNSC to remove Russia or “dissolve” itself.
Guterres had briefed the Council – under the current monthly Presidency of the US – on Thursday about his recent visit to the two countries.
“Throughout my travels, I did not mince words. I said the same thing in Moscow as I did in Kyiv… namely that: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a violation of its territorial integrity and of the Charter of the United Nations. It must end for the sake of the people of Ukraine, Russia, and the entire world,” he had said.