Statement by Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation Vassily Nebenzia at UNSC briefing on Ukraine

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November 16, 2022


We must express appreciation to our Albanian and American colleagues for calling this meeting, even though they did it as early as last week without even formulating the topic, and thus demonstrating, as we can see now, exceptional insightfulness. Had this meeting not been scheduled, we would have needed to call it to address the attempts of Ukraine and Poland to provoke a direct clash between Russian and NATO.

The irresponsible statements made by the leaders of these two states cannot be perceived otherwise. Take the statement by V.Zelensky. “We must put the terrorist in his place! The longer Russia feels impunity, the more threats there will be to everyone who can be reached by Russian missiles. Hitting NATO territory with missiles… This is a Russian missile attack on collective security! This is a really significant escalation. Action is needed!” Then he extended condolences to Poland regarding the deaths of people in a “Russian missile attack”, and said that Russia kills “everyone it can reach”.

I underscore that such claims are made by the person who cannot but be well aware that it had been Ukrainian air-defense missiles that hit the territory of Poland. It means that we are having to do not with just another piece of disinformation, but with a conscious attempt to drag NATO, which is waging “a war by proxy” on Russia in Ukraine, into a direct confrontation with our country.

The Russophobic Polish authorities went almost as far, as they stated unapologetically from the very start that they had suffered an attack by Russia.  The MFA of Poland even summoned the Russian Ambassador for a strong demarche. This happened despite the fact that the photos that were posted in social media “on hot scents” do not leave any doubts that Poland had been hit by missiles launched from a Ukrainian air defense system. Actually, this has already been expressly confirmed even in NATO and in the West at large.

Had it not been for that evidence, all facts would have been concealed from the public, and Russia would have been proclaimed the guilty side. But it is hard to negate the obvious, like in the case with the UAF strike on Kramatorsk on 8 April, which they tried to pass off as a Russian crime, but the photos by eyewitnesses prevented this deliberate cruel provocation. Our former Western partners no longer recall this, and the Kiev regime has envisaged penalties for everyone who may post materials on social media depicting effects of any military strikes, because by doing so Ukrainians may inadvertently thwart further provocations their authorities may plot.

Back to the tragic incident. I cannot fail to mention that Ukrainian air defense has long had strong bad repute, which at the very least started back in October 2001, when Russian civilian aircraft en route from Tel Aviv to Novosibirsk was downed above the Black Sea during a military exercise. The accident claimed 78 lives. Then in 2014, many recalled this tragedy when another plane crash happened. I mean MH17, which was downed in Donbas. But the so-called international investigators, Ukraine included, never considered the version that Kiev may have been responsible for that. In recent months, we have seen lots of photos depicting the effects of Ukrainian air defense missiles hitting residential buildings, behind which the defense systems had been deployed in various cities of Ukraine. There are clumsy attempts to pass these pictures off as evidence of consequences of Russian strikes – the strikes that are launched from our high-precision weapons against military facilities and related critical infrastructure. When saying so, they forget to mention that had it really been Russian strikes, nothing would have been left of those houses.


We long ceased to be surprised by your attempts to blame Russia for everything, in all circumstances, contrary to all facts and common sense. Today, despite the obvious rationale behind the Ukrainian-Polish provocation, many representatives of Western states implied in their remarks that even if the missiles had been launched by Ukraine, it was Russia’s fault all the same, because Russia destroys critical infrastructure. Lameness of this logic can best be seen if we consider the irresponsible shelling of the Zaporozhye NPP, which as everyone is aware Ukraine stands behind.  Some of you repeated your favorite cunning mantra: “we would not have found ourselves where we are, had it not been for Russia”. I remind again that we would not have been where we are, if a deadly unconstitutional coup d’état had not taken place in Kiev back in 2014 with direct participation of Western states. I remind that the leaders of that coup from day 1 adopted a course at distortion of history and a crackdown on the Russian language, and thus provoked a violent internal civil conflict.  We would not be discussing any of this now, had you not indulged the Kiev regime in its unwillingness to implement the Minsk Agreements, and had you not covered up for its 8-years-long war against the people of Donbas.  In such case, we would not have needed to start our special military operation to protect those people.

If you abstained from interfering and supplying Ukraine with weapons and ammunition, if you encouraged the leadership of Ukraine to move towards peace on realistic terms instead of conniving at their delirious fantasies about the possibility of winning over Russia (for which sake Zelensky’s regime is throwing tens of thousands of soldiers in a senseless slaughter), if you did not leave unnoticed terrorist attacks of Ukrainian special services against Russia, then we would not have to launch the high-precision strikes against the infrastructure. But since you do what you do, and since the Kiev regime takes credit for non-existent military achievements, we have to pursue the goals of the special military operation, while reducing Ukraine’s military potential, which has been mostly maintained thanks to the abundant flow of Western weapons. We got accustomed to Ukraine being above any criticism. Any crimes committed by the Kiev regime are by default ignored or ascribed to Russia. We got accustomed to detestable fakes about Russia and our armed forces. I will ask you this one question, rhetorical, of course. Has any of you ever commented on the atrocities and repressions that the Kiev regime uses against civilians in the territories under its control; on the names that Kiev calls those people; on the torture that Kiev subjects them to? This is happening now in Kherson, and prior to that it was happening in other cities and towns. All of this can be easily accessed online. “No, you haven’t” is the answer, because this is beyond your horizon and beyond your arbitrary conscience. So when you criticize someone, you should look in the mirror. And also remember how arrogantly you rejected the proposals to discuss issues of European security back in the day, and how you clung to NATO’s “sacred right” to expand without reference to the concerns of others.


Since we are all gathered here, I will provide some updates on the NATO involvement in the Ukrainian conflict. NATO keeps flooding Ukraine with weapons, and deploys teams of instructors and foreign mercenaries in order to operate them. US military have become actively engaged in planning and de facto coordination of armed action, which even the Pentagon admitted to recently.

We have no doubts as to how Western military equipment is used – it launched targeted strikes against civil facilities. In the past week alone, numerous artillery bombardments, including from HIMARS, targeted the central areas and residential quarters of Donetsk, Yasinovataya, Stakhanov, Svatovo, other settlements, and even the towns of Russia’s Belgorod region. Strikes continue to be launched against the Kakhovskaya Hydropower Plant, the devastation of which would have triggered a major humanitarian disaster.

We do not have any illusions as to why the West needs this. For them Ukraine is i.a. a testing site for various types of weaponry. Ukrainian Minister of Defense O.Reznikov confirmed this recently. He said that various Western armament systems were “competing” in Ukraine.


We are very surprised at the attempts of our Western colleagues to take credit for exports of Russian fertilizers to developing states via the World Food Programme. President of France E.Macron announced that the channel for deliveries had allegedly been established thanks to the efforts of France and WFP. He used the pronoun “we”. Other Western delegations made similar claims today. I wonder who that “we” refers to. I remind that this was about the fertilizers that Western states kept on their territories and that Russia itself offered to transfer to developing states. The West, in particular the European Union, not only failed to facilitate, but actually opposed this. Now they hypocritically pose as saviors of developing nations. Once again, the fertilizers that are going to Africa are the fertilizers that were “frozen” in the European ports because of EU’s sanctions policy. Russia proposed to dispatch the fertilizers to the countries in need free of charge. This is what happens now under the mediation of the WFP, to which we are paying for services.


It would be naïve to think that all Western military and financial support for Ukraine is used as intended. We cited quite a lot of evidence to prove that a considerable part of those weapons ended up in the hands of terrorists and criminals, maintaining conflicts across the globe; and that huge volumes of resources were simply plundered. It seems that suppliers of this “assistance” have finally come to give this a thought.

On 7 November, a group of American experts was sent to Ukraine to check on the weapons deliveries to Kiev. It turned out that the US was in control only of the tenth part of it, which equaled 22,000 items. The fate of the other weapons remains unclear.

In parallel to this, after the collapse of FTX crypto exchange and literal disappearance of its billions-worth assets, some fascinating facts surfaced regarding FTX’s contracts with the government of Ukraine. The founder and the owner of FTX is one of the major donors of the Democratic Party of the United States, which plays the leading role in allotting funds to Kiev. These plots do not seem surprising to us, but they surely might seem so to the American taxpayers.

Shy voices of reason that sound i.a. in the West, disperse in the aggressive uproar of those who seek to set forth the hostilities at all costs and defeat Russia with the help of Ukraine. For example, NATO Secretary-General J.Stoltenberg said that the Alliance considered unacceptable any contacts aimed at a settlement taking into account Russia’s position and interests.  US former special representative for Ukraine K.Volker issued an article where he made normalization of relations between Russia and the West conditional on Russia’s military defeat, change of leadership and reconsideration of our current national borders.

The West is trying to shift responsibility for all its sins to Russia, while using the platform of this Organization for those egoistic purposes. This clearly showed on Monday, 14 November, at the special session of the General Assembly. Western sponsors of a draft resolution on “reparations” failed to explain (even in broad basic terms) what sort of a mechanism for reparation for damage they intend to establish. Instead, they only made the developing states subscribe to a legally flawed politicized text, aimed at “legalizing” the expropriation of someone else’s assets.  But this time the Western campaign of blackmail, coercion, and intimidation clearly faltered.

The results of the vote, whereby more than a half of member states refused to support this manifestation of Western anti-Russian narrative, are quite self-explanatory.  For most countries, including those who were forced to vote “yes”, double standards of our Western colleagues are obvious, same as their unwillingness to stand accountable for their wrongdoings – slavery, colonialism, the desire to counterpose international law with the “rules-based order” where the rules are set by themselves.

The developing world could see once again that the Ukrainian crisis is only a bargaining chip in Western plans, an instrument to punish the unwanted, subjugate the dependents, and try to keep their vanishing global dominance in the evolving multipolar world.

Thank you.

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