Statement by the delegation of Ukraine at the General Assembly Debate on IIIM

Statement by the delegation of Ukraine at the General Assembly Debate on IIIM

Madame President,

I would like to thank Madame Catherine Marchi Uhel for the presentation of the report, and her and her team’s dedication and commitment to make the IIIM achieve its goals. Ukraine was the IIIM actives supporter from the very beginning and keenly follows its progress.

As we align ourselves to the statement delivered by my colleague, Ambassador of Liechtenstein, I wish to add the following points in my national capacity.

First, the people of Syria have suffered enough. Establishing accountability for crimes committed on the Syrian soil since the beginning of the eight-year brutal conflict is not only a core element of the universal rule of law, but a moral obligation of the international community towards the victims. On too many occasions, we have witnessed how allies of the Syrian regime, in particular those among permanent members of the Security Council, are abusing their powers to prevent justice. And this has happened not only to the Syrian people. My own country, Ukraine, is a victim of Russia’s veto obsession.

That is why, and as one of co-sponsors of the Mechanism back in 2016, my delegation remains strongly convinced that the IIIM is necessary and highly relevant. At a time of impasse in the Security Council, the wider international community must think creatively about the way forward for ensuring accountability.

Second, we welcome the ongoing improvement in the efficiency and sustainability of the IIIM operations, including the establishment of the state-of-the-art information and evidence management system. It is the IIIM’s primary responsibility, pursuant to its mandate, to ensure that as much violations and abuses of international law in Syria as possible are documented and used in practical terms. In this regard, Ukraine endorses recommendations presented in the report, seeking to build upon the Mechanism’s cooperation with the United Nations, Member States and the civil society.

Thirdly and lastly, as the initial phase is over, we support the call to have funding of the IIIM provided from the United Nations regular budget, as in the case for the mechanism concerning Myanmar.

We encourage other Member States to do the same.

I thank you.