Statement by H.E. Dr. S. Jaishankar, Minister of External Affairs of India at the U. N. Security Council Briefing on Maintenance of peace and security of Ukraine

Fight against impunity

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22 September, 2022

Thank you, Madame President. Let me begin by congratulating the French Presidency for its able stewardship of the Security Council this month.

  1. I thank Secretary General Antonio Guterres for his briefing, and take note of the remarks made by ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan.
  2. Allow me to preface my remarks by reminding the Council that India is not a signatory to the Rome Statute, nor a member of the International Criminal Court.

Madam President,

  1. The trajectory of the Ukraine conflict is a matter of profound concern for the entire international community. The future outlook appears even more disturbing. The nuclear issue is a particular anxiety. In a globalized world, the impact of the conflict is being felt even in distant regions. We have all experienced its consequences in terms of surging costs and actual shortages of food grains, fertilizers and fuel. On this score too, there are good grounds to be worried about what awaits us. The global south, especially, is feeling the pain acutely.  We must therefore not initiate measures that further complicate the struggling global economy. That is why India strongly reiterates the need for an immediate cessation of all hostilities and a return to dialogue and diplomacy. Clearly, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi has emphasized, this cannot be an era of war. On our part, we are providing both humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and economic support to our neighbours under economic distress.
  2. Turning to the specific topic before the Council today, let me emphasize that even in conflict situations, there can be no justification for violation of human rights or of international law. Where any such acts occur, it is imperative that they are investigated in an objective and independent manner. This was the position that we took with regard to the killings in Bucha. This is the position we take even today. The Council will also recall that we had then supported calls for an independent investigation into that incident.
  3. The fight against impunity is critical to the larger pursuit of securing peace and justice. The Security Council must send an unambiguous and unequivocal message on this count. Politics should never ever provide cover to evade accountability.  Nor indeed to facilitate impunity.  Regrettably, we have seen this of late in this very Chamber, when it comes to sanctioning some of the world’s most dreaded terrorists.  We must have consistency if we are to ensure credibility.
  4. Once again, let me emphasize Madam President, that the need of the hour is to end this conflict and return to the negotiating table. This Council is the most powerful contemporary symbol of diplomacy. It must continue to live up to its purpose. The global order that we all subscribe to, is based on international law, UN Charter and respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty of all States. These principles must be upheld, without exception.

I thank you Madam President.

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