Statement by the delegation of Ukraine in explanation of vote on UNSC draft resolution on the humanitarian situation in Syria

Ukraine voted in favor of this document since we wholeheartedly hoped that it would have served the purpose of breaking the dangerous pattern of escalation in Syria and contribute to easing the continued intense sufferings inflicted on its people. The resolution represents a rare, if pale, glimmer of hope in the otherwise gloomy environment around the Syria issue in this Council.

It is exactly for the same reason that we are extremely dismayed but not surprised by the fact that all these efforts were at the end derailed once again by the Russian Federation. Such a shame! If the resolution did see the light and was adopted it would have been a concrete and meaningful step towards exercising the collective responsibility by this Council; it would have helped to prevent what has already become one of the gravest humanitarian tragedies of modern times. It is utterly frustrating that the counter-terrorism narrative will continue to be used by Russia as an alibi for bombardments of opposition forces and civilians in Aleppo and elsewhere. History will hold accountable those who didn’t let this Council to discharge its duties.

We again stress the urgent need for the UN to look into the alarming reports on the extensive use of incendiary weapons as well as other indiscriminate weapons, including bunker-buster bombs. We firmly insist that those responsible for committing crimes against humanity, war crimes and other grave violations of international humanitarian law should be brought to account. I am sure they will.

Let us also convey again a clear message to those planning a retake of Eastern Aleppo – the idea that a regime victory would lead to an enforced stability in Syria is a dangerous fantasy. What we are witnessing is turning Aleppo into another Grozny - and a “Grozny scenario” in Syria is possible but will never be sustainable, as there is no military solution to this conflict.