VATICAN SPEAKS AT UN IN SUPPORT OF UKRAINE

February 21, 2017

VATICAN SPEAKS AT UN IN SUPPORT OF UKRAINE
 
CALL FOR ENFORCEMENT OF CEASEFIRE
AND RESPECT OF TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY
 
The Vatican’s delegate to the United Nations spoke is support of the recent ceasefire declared in the Russia-Ukraine conflict that has taken over 10,000 lives on Ukrainian territory since 2014. Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, Archbishop Bernardito Auza, was speaking at a meeting of the UN Security Council, which is presently chaired by the Ukraine delegate. He called for humanitarian aid, which the Vatican has contributed toward in the past, but he also called for respect for Ukraine’s territorial integrity. The latter has been threatened and disregarded by Russia in the illegal annexation of Crimea and the ongoing separatist threat in the two most eastern provinces (oblasty) of Ukraine.

The full text of the statement:

       Intervention of H.E. Archbishop Bernardito Auza Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations United Nations Security Council Open Debate on Maintenance of international peace and security: Conflicts in Europe New York, 21 February 2017

Mr. President,

      With this intervention, the Holy See intends to reiterate its closeness to and solidarity with all peoples afflicted by conflicts and aggressions of any kind, including the so-called hybrid wars and frozen situations.
       The Holy See holds that any initiative in maintaining international peace and security should necessarily be inspired and driven by humanitarian considerations, namely the preservation of human life, the assuring of adequate living conditions and the alleviation of suffering. At the same time, it is the obligation of States to refrain from actions that destabilize neighbouring countries and work together to create the necessary conditions for peace and reconciliation.
       Concerning the conflict in Ukraine, which continues to cause grave concern since it began in 2014, the Holy See underscores once again that all necessary steps should be taken to enforce the ceasefire and to implement the measures agreed upon. These efforts should be accompanied by the sincere commitment of all involved parties to respecting all fundamental human rights and restoring stability at the national and international levels, not least by respecting international legality with regard to Ukraine’s territory and borders (cf. Statement of the Permanent Observer of the Holy See, Human Rights Council 28th Session, 26 March 2015*).
       By committing itself to offering direct humanitarian assistance to the population of the affected areas, the Holy See stresses the need to protect the civilians and the urgency of making every possible effort to avoid the continuation of this unresolved conflict and to find a political solution through dialogue and negotiation.
       In this regard, the Holy See continues to welcome the efforts made by the UN, the OSCE and other relevant organizations to promote peace throughout Europe, including in Ukraine.
       Thank you, Mr. President.
 
(source: Vatican Radio)
 
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Video of entire 21 February 2017 discussion of the UN Security Council on “Conflicts on Europe” which very often mentions with the ongoing conflict in Ukraine can be found on the UN Website in PART 1, PART 2 and PART 3. Canada addresses the Council in Part 3 at 9:00. Chairing the meeting, by the way, is the delegation from Ukraine.
 
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Notes: This is the 2015 statement of the Vatican mentioned in the more recent statement above….
 
INTERVENTION BY THE HOLY SEE AT THE 28th SESSION OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL ON UKRAINE
 
STATEMENT BY H.E. ARCHBISHOP SILVANO M. TOMASI PERMANENT OBSERVER OF THE HOLY SEE TO THE UNITED NATIONS AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS IN GENEVA
 
Geneva
Thursday, 26 March 2015
       With reference to the Statement made by this Permanent Mission at the 25th Session of the Human Rights Council on 26 March 2014, the Holy See reiterates its closeness and solidarity to all the people of Ukraine, whose country continues to be affected by the present conflict.
       With this intervention, the Holy See intends to stress once again the urgent need to respect international legality regarding Ukraine’s territory and borders, as a key element for ensuring stability at both the national and regional levels, and to re- establish law and order based on full respect for all fundamental human rights.
       In this regard, the Holy See welcomes the steps taken to enforce the ceasefire, which is intended as an essential condition to arrive at political solutions exclusively through dialogue and negotiation. At the same time, it emphasizes the crucial need for all parties to implement the decisions taken by common agreement, acknowledging in this context the efforts made by the UN, the OSCE and other relevant organizations with reference to the Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements.
       The Holy See holds that the full adherence of all parties to the provisions of said Agreements is a prerequisite for all further efforts to improve the humanitarian and human rights situation in the affected territories, by, first of all, bringing an end to the loss of human life, acts of violence and other forms of abuse. It should also include the release of all hostages and illegally held persons and ensure unfettered access by all legitimate actors to provide humanitarian assistance in those areas.
       At the same time the Holy See is concerned about the social emergency facing the population living in the areas affected, who suffer from poverty, hunger, insecurity and health risks. It is also concerned about injured and displaced persons and families suffering from the loss of loved ones. In this urgent situation, the Holy See is committed to offering its assistance through its institutions and requests that the charitable organisations of the Catholic Church intensify and coordinate their efforts to provide assistance to the people of Ukraine. The Holy See also wishes to express its confidence in the solidarity of the international community.
 

 


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