Statement delivered by Her Excellency Ambassador Vanessa Frazier, Permanent Representative of Malta to the United Nations, at the Security Council briefing on Threats to International Peace and Security: Ukraine

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22 January 2023

Thank you, President. I also thank Deputy High Representative Ebo for his informative briefing.

Nearly two years ago the Russia Federation, during its presidency of the Security Council, decided to violate fundamental principles of international law by launching a fully-fledged war of aggression against its sovereign neighbour. Acting thus in complete opposition with its duty to maintain international peace and security.

Today’s meeting is yet another attempt to rationalise the unjustifiable and seek to provide a narrative where the victim is the aggressor and the aggressor the victim.


Malta condemns Russia’s ongoing campaign of systematic air strikes against civilian targets and critical infrastructure in Ukraine that began on December 29. Just last week, it shelled the cities of Kharkiv and Odesa, injuring at least 20 civilians. These relentless and inhumane attacks had destroyed civilian infrastructure, including residential buildings, medical facilities, and life- supporting infrastructure. Attacks against civilians and civilian infrastructure are prohibited under international law and are completely unacceptable. These attacks must stop.

According to the UN Human Rights Office, the confirmed number of civilians killed since February 2022 has risen to more than 10,200 – including 575 children – and more than 19,300 have been injured.

The transfer of ballistic missiles, along with any other arms and related material, from the DPRK and Iran to Russia violates multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions, undermines the global non-proliferation regime, and inflicts further suffering to the Ukrainian people. We condemn these violations in the strongest terms and call for all parties to fully abide with all pertinent resolutions.


Adding to Russian drone attacks, shelling and destruction, several reports have shed light on Russia’s systematic use of anti-personnel landmines and the use and transfer of cluster munitions in Ukraine.

Malta echoes Secretary General’s call for an immediate end to the use of these horrendous weapons which have lasting and devastating impact on innocent civilians long after the conflict ends.

Russia’s aggression has also exposed millions of Ukrainians to increasing risks of gender-based violence, trafficking, deportation, and exploitation, women and children being the most affected.

Furthermore, underneath the physical repercussions of victims and survivors, lurks the deeply rooted psychological trauma that will affect millions for years to come. Malta will continue to help Ukraine in the face of the humanitarian needs created by the Russian aggression.

Malta also strongly supports all ongoing accountability processes and the important work of the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court, as well as the essential mandates of the Register of Damage Caused by the Aggression of the Russian Federation Against Ukraine, and of the International Centre for the Prosecution of the Crime of Aggression Against Ukraine in ensuring the right to reparation for victims and Ukraine.

To conclude President, Malta reiterates that Ukraine has the inherent right to defend itself from this Russian aggression, as enshrined in Article 51 of the UN Charter. It has the right to protect its citizens, its borders, its sovereignty, and its territorial integrity, just like any other member of this organisation.

Once again, we reiterate the call for Russia to end its hostilities, and withdraw its military forces, equipment, and proxies. The maintenance of international peace and security can only be ensured through a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace in Ukraine.

I thank you.

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