Amb. Power on U.N. General Assembly Resolution on Ukraine

United States Mission to the United Nations
March 27, 2014

Statement by Ambassador Samantha Power, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations, On the Adoption of the General Assembly Resolution on Ukraine, March 27, 2014

Today, countries from every corner of the world made clear their support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, their support for international law, and for the foundational norms that underpin the United Nations and international cooperation in the 21st century. The world has made clear that the international community will not accept Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea

The resolution adopted by the General Assembly is a clear call from the international community for all states to desist and refrain from actions that undermine Ukraine’s national unity and territorial integrity. The resolution also stresses the importance of maintaining an inclusive political dialogue in Ukraine that reflects the diversity of its society.

I welcome the support from member states in every region who have joined together in condemning an act that blatantly undermines the UN Charter. The vote shows the strong global conviction, grounded in international law, that nations and peoples have the right to chart their own course free from external influences or fear of invasion. Many of today’s votes were cast in recognition that while we may currently be discussing Ukraine, if such a blatant violation of a nation’s borders is left unchecked, the consequences for other nations could be severe.

It is important to note that, in the face of international isolation, only a handful of states joined with Russia in defending its violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. Many of these votes came from regimes that, like Russia, fear free expression and peaceful assembly. Today’s vote shows that despite significant misinformation spread by Russia, the truth of what Russia has done in Crimea has penetrated to all the regions of the world.

The United States continues to encourage a resolution to this crisis through direct dialogue between Russia and Ukraine as supported by the international community; international monitors to ensure the rights of all Ukrainians are protected including vulnerable minorities in occupied Crimea; a free and fair presidential election in May; and an inclusive constitutional reform process. The United States stands with the people of Ukraine and will continue to support them as they build a democratic, stable and prosperous future.

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