Author Archives: Julia Dean

UN chief: Countries bound for COP27 must make climate action ‘the top global priority’

As government representatives begin the finalize the agenda for the COP27 climate change conference in Egypt next month, for pre-COP planning in the Democratic Republic of the Congo capital, Kinshasa, Secretary-General António Guterres told journalists in New York that the work ahead is “as immense as the climate impacts we are seeing around the world”. More

The Secretary-General   —  Remarks To Press On Russian Decision On Annexation Of Ukrainian Territory 

29 September

As Delivered

The Kremlin has announced that a ceremony will take place tomorrow in Moscow that will launch a process of annexation of the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia.

In this moment of peril, I must underscore my duty as Secretary-General to uphold the Charter of the United Nations.   

The UN Charter is clear.    

Any annexation of a State’s territory by another State resulting from the threat or use of force is a violation of the Principles of the UN Charter and international law.

The United Nations General Assembly is equally clear.

In its landmark Friendly Relations Declaration of 24 October 1970 —repeatedly cited as stating rules of general international law by the International Court of Justice —  the General Assembly declared that “the territory of a State shall not be the object of acquisition by another State resulting from the threat or use of force” and that “no territorial acquisition resulting from the threat or use of force shall be recognised as legal”.

 And I must be clear.

The Russian Federation, as one of the five permanent members of the Security Council, shares a particular responsibility to respect the Charter.

Any decision to proceed with the annexation of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine would have no legal value and deserves to be condemned.

It cannot be reconciled with the international legal framework.

It stands against everything the international community is meant to stand for.

It flouts the Purposes and Principles of the United Nations.

It is a dangerous escalation.

It has no place in the modern world.

It must not be accepted.

The position of the United Nations is unequivocal: we are fully committed to the sovereignty, unity, independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders, in accordance with the relevant UN resolutions.

I want to underscore that the so-called “referenda” in the occupied regions were conducted during active armed conflict, in areas under Russian occupation, and outside Ukraine’s legal and constitutional framework.  

 They cannot be called a genuine expression of the popular will.

Any decision by Russia to go forward will further jeopardize the prospects for peace.

It will prolong the dramatic impacts on the global economy, especially developing countries and hinder our ability to deliver life-saving aid across Ukraine and beyond.

It is high time to step back from the brink.

Now more than ever, we must work together to end this devastating and senseless war and uphold the UN Charter and international law.

Thank you.

Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General – on protests in Iran

The Secretary-General has been closely following the ongoing protests in Iran. During their bilateral meeting on 22 September 2022, the Secretary-General stressed to President Raisi the need to respect human rights, including freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.

We are increasingly concerned about reports of rising fatalities, including women and children, related to the protests. The Secretary-General calls on the security forces to refrain from using unnecessary or disproportionate force and appeals to all to exercise utmost restraint to avoid further escalation.

We underline the need for prompt, impartial and effective investigation into Ms. Mahsa Amini’s death by an independent competent authority.

Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General
New York, 27 September 2022

Referenda in Russian-controlled Ukraine ‘cannot be regarded as legal’: UN political affairs chief

Recent so-called referenda conducted in four Russian-occupied regions in Ukraine cannot be considered legal under international law, the UN’s political affairs chief, Rosemary DiCarlo, told the Security Council on Tuesday.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy also briefed ambassadors, blasting the “sham referenda”, though Russia objected to his participation via videoconference.

The country’s ambassador, Vassily Nebenzia, said the President should participate in person, in line with the rules.  “The Council should not turn into a forum for political shows or cinema,” he added. More

Special Coverage of the 77th General Debate 20 September – 26 September 2022

The stage is set for the
general debate of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly. As the world has begun to emerge from the worst of
the pandemic, the debate will be held largely in-person, with world leaders heading to NY to deliver their statements in the iconic Assembly Hall.

Here, UN News gives you a front row seat to all the action.

Rescuing the SDGs: the GA highlights ‘world’s to-do list’

The UN Secretary-General and the President of the 77TH General Assembly joined world leaders and Goodwill Ambassadors on Monday in a global call to rescue the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and get back on track to building a better world that “leaves no one behind”.

The 2022 SDG Moment, which places an annual spotlight on the 17 Global Goals agreed by countries in December 2015, took place as the world faces a deepening cost-of-living crisis against the backdrop of the Ukraine war and the COVID-19 pandemic, which have halted development, especially in low-income countries.

“The world has a long ‘to do’ list”, António Guterres told world leaders, asking for more finance and investment from the public and private sectors, to meet growing needs. More

Black Sea Grain Initiative – Joint Coordination Centre – Operational Update

4 August 2022, ISTANBUL – The Joint Coordination Centre (JCC) has authorized the departure of three vessels from Ukraine, two from Chornomorsk and one from Odesa, carrying a total of 58,041 tons of corn through the maritime humanitarian corridor under the Black Sea Grain Initiative.

The vessels authorized to move tomorrow, 5 August, are:
1) M/V Polarnet, anchored in Chornomorsk port, with a cargo of 12,000 MT of corn destined to Karasu, Türkiye
2) M/V Navistar, anchored in Odesa port, with a cargo of 33,000 MT of corn with destination Ringaskiddy, Ireland
3) M/V Rojen, anchored in Chornomorsk port, with a cargo of 13,041 MT corn destined to Teesport, UK

The JCC has also authorized the movement, pending inspection, of M/V Fulmar S, inbound for Chornomorsk. Fulmar S is currently at anchorage at the inspection area near north west of Istanbul.

The three outbound vessels are estimated to depart in the morning from their respective ports. Timings may be affected based on readiness, weather conditions or other unexpected circumstances. Inspection is expected to take place after arrival at the anchorage area in Turkish territorial waters.

The inbound vessel is anticipated to move from her anchorage at 0900hrs after the inspection by the JCC’s inspection team.

Drawing from lessons learnt during the first movement of M/V Razoni, the JCC has authorized this movement as a second ‘proof of concept’, testing multi-ship operations in the corridor including an inbound ship. In addition, the corridor has been revised to allow for more efficient passage of ships while maintaining safety.

The JCC further acknowledges the need for the commercial vessels stranded in the Ukrainian ports since February to depart to their pre-defined destinations. Their movement will free up valuable pier space for more inbound ships to come in and carry food to global markets in line with the Initiative.

As per procedures agreed at the JCC, all participants coordinate with their respective military and other relevant authorities to ensure the safe passage of commercial vessels.

The JCC will monitor closely the safe passage of the vessels through the humanitarian maritime corridor.

*****

Note to editors: The Joint Coordination Centre was established under the Black Sea Grain Initiative in Istanbul on 27 July 2022. It comprises senior representatives from Russia, Türkiye, Ukraine and United Nations and its role is to enable the safe transportation, by merchant ships, of grain and other foodstuffs and fertilizers from three key Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea to the rest of the world.

For info, contact: Ismini Palla (Ms), Media and Communications officer, Joint Coordination Centre, +962770996330, palla@un.org

Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General – on the Democratic Republic of the Congo

The Secretary-General is outraged by a serious incident that took place this morning, 31 July, in Kasindi, North Kivu province, on the border of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda, in which military personnel of MONUSCO opened fire while returning to the Democratic Republic of the Congo from leave in their home country. 

The Secretary-General is both saddened and dismayed by the loss of life and serious injuries sustained during this incident. He expresses his deepest condolences to the affected families, the people of the DRC and the Congolese government, and wishes a speedy recovery to those injured. 

The Secretary-General stresses in the strongest terms the need to establish accountability for these events. He welcomes the decision of his Special Representative in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to detain the MONUSCO personnel involved in the incident and to immediately open an investigation. He notes that the United Nations has established contact with the country of origin of the concerned personnel, with a view to urgently initiating judicial proceedings with the participation of victims and witnesses so that appropriate sanctions can be handed down. 

Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-General 

New York, 31 July 2022