As this Friday marks one year since Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine, the General secretary of the United Nations recalled this Friday that the objectives and principles of the Charter of the United Nations “are not a mere matter of convenience”, but rather “constitute the essence” of the Organization “and exist precisely to address any grievance, whatever be”.
During a session of Security Council at the ministerial level on the situation in Ukraine, António Guterres regretted that, as he requested twelve months ago in that same forum, peace was not given a chance and war was imposed.
“The Russian incursion of Ukraine is a flagrant violation of the United Nations Charter and international law. It has triggered widespread death, destruction and displacement. Attacks against civilians and civilian infrastructure have caused numerous victims and terrible suffering,” said António Guterres.
Among these sufferings, he included the dozens of cases of sexual violence suffered by men, women and girls, as well as the serious violations of international humanitarian law and human rights against prisoners of war, and the hundreds of cases of forced disappearances and arbitrary detentions. of civilians.
More humanitarian aid, less work and mental health
He then explained the serious consequences that the Ukrainian population is suffering, whose lives he described as “hell”, with about 40% of the population requiring humanitarian aid, and the same number of people unable to buy or get enough food. In addition, 30% of jobs have disappeared.
To this accumulation of adversities, he added a displacement crisis that adds up to “more than eight million Ukrainian refugees throughout Europe”, to which he added “some 5.4 million internally displaced persons”.
In the same way, it indicated that “more than half of Ukrainian children have been forced to leave their homes”, and that minors “unaccompanied and separated from their families are at serious risk of violence, abuse and exploitation”.
“Less measurable – but no less important – is the devastating impact of months of displacement and shelling on the mental health of Ukrainians. Nearly 10 million people, including 7.8 million children, are at risk of severe PTSD.” alerted.
Extend the Black Sea Grain Initiative
After reiterating the need to achieve peace in accordance with the United Nations Charter, he stressed that the highest priority must be the protection of civilians and that it is necessary to achieve “safe and unimpeded access to humanitarian aid.”
Later, Guterres described as “unacceptable” the “covert threats” about a possible use of nuclear weapons in the conflict and stressed the importance of all parties remaining committed to the Black Sea Grain Initiative, of which he requested its extension “beyond March 2023”.
“The United Nations is firmly committed to working to remove the remaining obstacles to the Russian export of food and fertilizer, including ammonia,” he specified.
Some exports that he considered “essential” to “lower prices and reduce food insecurity around the world.”