Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic

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Statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic Jan Lipavský at the UN Security Council


22 September 2022, New York

Thank you, Madam President,

Mr Secretary-General, Excellencies,

Let me thank the French presidency for the opportunity to participate in this important meeting.

The Czech Republic now holds the rotating EU Presidency. The EU is a core promoter of values and principles of the UN Charter.

Czechia hosts the highest number of Ukrainian refugees per capita, over 400 thousand.

Russia’s colonial, unprovoked and illegal war of aggression against Ukraine sent this massive wave of the most vulnerable population abroad.

Russian aggression is perhaps the most dangerous challenge to global peace in recent decades. Today, it is about Ukraine, tomorrow, it may be another country.

In August 1968, it was Czechoslovakia, invaded by Moscow-led troops. A crack-down on the so-called Prague Spring, a violent interference in another country’s peaceful life, turning my country into an occupied colony. 

We are hearing about the hastily organized sham referendums in parts of Ukraine. Russia cannot trick the international community and steal again another state’s territory.

Russia’s aggressive, colonial policy and imperial desires must be rejected for good. Ukraine refused this slavery and bravely fights for a multilateral world where rules protect peace.

We are horrified by the atrocities committed by Russian troops in Mariupol, Bucha, Irpin, Izjum and elsewhere. And extremely concerned by the reports on the so-called “filtration camps” run by Russia in Ukraine.

Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian citizens have been deported to Russia, including children. There are testimonies of sexual and gender-based crimes, used as a method of warfare.

All must be investigated and perpetrators must be held accountable. We applaud the Secretary-General for launching the UN fact-finding mission on events in Olenivka.

More than 40 states, including Czechia, referred the situation in Ukraine to the ICC, which opened its investigation into the situation in Ukraine already in March.

We strongly support the ICC, including by seconding a public prosecutor and by voluntary contributions.

And we call for establishment of a special international tribunal to prosecute the crime of aggression committed by Russia.

Czech law enforcement agencies have launched criminal investigation of certain crimes, based on the principle of universal jurisdiction.

The Security Council members bear global responsibility for peace and respect to international law. That is what we expect of you when we elect you.

Please, act!

We need peace in Ukraine. We need to restore respect for the UN Charter and international law. We need to ensure justice for victims and to stop impunity of the perpetrators.

I thank you.