The risk of major conflict is real & needs to be prevented at all costs: UN on Ukraine

As per the United Nations (UN) Tweet, “The next hours & days will be critical. The risk of major conflict is real & needs to be prevented at all costs.”

UN political chief ‘Dicarlo Rosemary’ stated that I brief the Council this evening on the unfolding dangerous situation in and around Ukraine with great concern and sadness.

In his statement today, the Secretary-General was clear: He believes the decision of the Russian Federation to acknowledge the independence of some regions of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions to be a breach of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and incompatible with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations. We lament this decision, which risks having regional and global repercussions.

He further stated that they also regret today’s order to deploy Russian troops into eastern Ukraine, mainly on a “peacekeeping mission”.

These results pursue the decision to order a mass evacuation of civilian residents of Donetsk and Luhansk into the Russian Federation.

Furthermore, they stated that they were worried about the escalating shelling across the contact line and reported many casualties. OSCE’s Special Monitoring Mission resource has recorded a total of 3,231 truce breaches in the Donbas area from 18-20 February: 1,073 truce violations, including 926 outbreaks in the Luhansk region, and 2,158 ceasefire violations, including 1,100 explosions, in the Donetsk region.

We remind all of their responsibilities under international humanitarian and human rights laws.

However, the United Nations is not in a state of mind to prove the several claims and allegations made by various actors; we are highly concerned about the reports of civilian casualties, targeting of critical civilian infrastructure, and ongoing evacuations.

We are deeply concerned about the possible importance of the latest developments for the existing negotiation frameworks. There are current risks and uncertainty. It is even more important to pursue dialogue.

They further stated that negotiation is the only way to recognize the existing differences among the key actors regarding regional security issues and the settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine in accordance with Security Council resolution 2002 (2015).

Before the current, already dangerous conditions escalate. Further, we call on all relevant actors to focus their efforts on an immediate cessation of hostilities. Civilians and civilian infrastructure must be safe, and actions and statements that may tense the situation must be avoided.

Over the past few weeks, key actors have been engaged in severe diplomatic efforts to avert a new eruption of conflict in the heart of Europe. The Secretary-General completely supported these efforts and has deplored even the possibility that a new conflict could break out.