Statement by Ambassador Hedda Samson, Deputy Head of Delegation of the European Union, at the UN Security Council meeting on Ukraine

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January 10, 2024

Ambassador Hedda Samson Deputy Head of Delegation of the European Union, in its capacity as observer, stated that the Russian Federation aims to destroy the morale and resilience of the Ukrainian people, as it unsuccessfully attempted last winter.  She both condemned Moscow’s intensified campaign of systematic air strikes against civilian targets and critical infrastructure in Ukraine, as well as the continued military support for the Russian Federation’s war of aggression provided by Iran, Belarus and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Urging Pyongyang and Moscow to abide by Council resolutions that clearly prohibit arms exports or imports involving the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, she also expressed concern over the situation at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant and the Russian Federation’s refusal to grant monitors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) access to the plant’s reactors.

She went on to point out that the negative consequences of Moscow’s aggression are not limited to Ukraine.  The Russian Federation’s deliberate attacks on Ukraine’s grain storage and export facilities — as well as its actions to hinder freedom of navigation in the Black Sea — demonstrate its continued desire to weaponize food security.  Security and stability in the Black Sea are vital for sustainable food exports to global markets — particularly to countries most in need.  She also said that the Russian Federation and its leadership must be held fully accountable for waging a war of aggression against Ukraine, for serious international crimes and for the massive damage caused by its war.  She therefore encouraged further efforts to establish a tribunal to prosecute such crimes as well as a future compensation mechanism, also expressing support for the work of the International Criminal Court and condemning Moscow’s continued attempts to undermine its independence, international mandate and functioning.

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