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Remarks to the Last Session of the 2022 Conference on Disarmament
September 19, 2022

U.S. Acting Permanent Representative Aud-Frances McKernan’s Remarks to the
Conference on Disarmament on the Last Session of the 2022 Conference on Disarmament

September 16, 2022

(as delivered)

Thank you, Mister President for giving me the floor,

And thank you for leading the Member States and observers of the Conference on Disarmament through its final weeks of 2022 and negotiating not only the final report, which our Rules of Procedure indicate we will make available to all UN Member States, but also our Subsidiary Body reports. This has been a time-consuming and difficult task, and the United States deeply appreciates Ecuador’s and your own personal dedication, to addressing some of our most complex and shared global security challenges. The United States is deeply grateful for your professional leadership of the Conference on Disarmament during this difficult time.

I would also like to thank the chairs of the Subsidiary Bodies, as well as their staff, for the many hours dedicated to listening to Member States and carefully drafting text that reflected the views expressed in the room and that could garner consensus. The U.S. delegation participated in every session, provided our comments, outlined our policies, and sought to develop balanced texts that reflected the views of CD Member States on the CD agenda items.

Sadly, and disappointingly, one delegation, the Russian Federation, has made a mockery of all of these good faith efforts. Unfortunately, what I previewed on March 3 has come true. Russia is now openly, blatantly, actively, repudiating disarmament cooperation. With their last-minute insertions to the Subsidiary Body draft text, with their disrespectful behavior toward the CD president when chaired by Colombia, to their denial of the fact that the CD met on March 3, they have made a mockery of all of us, and of our efforts in the room today.

At a time when we need tangible action and results, to see the disarmament machinery work, the Russian Federation wastes our time with never-ending procedural rebuttals here in the CD and in the space open ended working group.

The United States will also staunchly defend and uphold the rules-based order. We believe that the United Nations and its associated bodies, like the Conference on Disarmament, provide a vital platform that can help address some of the most pressing challenges that affect all of us and we are committed to continuing to work with and through the United Nations system to find solutions to these challenges.