One year ago, on February 24th 2022, Russia launched its unprovoked full-scale invasion against Ukraine. We condemn the Russian government’s war of aggression against Ukraine, including continued attacks on Ukrainian civilians and critical infrastructure, and the weaponization of energy and food, which triggered enormous suffering for many Ukrainians and other innocent people around the world, including in Egypt.
Consistent with the votes in the United Nations on March 2 and October 12, 2022, when Egypt and other partners in the UN overwhelmingly condemned Russia's war in Ukraine, we continue to stand up for the rules-based international system. We condemn the illegal occupation and the attempted illegal annexation of Ukrainian territories. Russia should stop this illegal aggression, which is the root cause of the current global food and energy crisis, immediately and unconditionally withdraw all forces and equipment from Ukraine, and respect Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. We share with Egypt the fundamental principle, enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, that all members of the United Nations must refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state. We are committed to, above all, defending this core principle against Russia’s unprovoked aggression, for the benefit of not only Ukraine, but the entire international community. We reaffirm our resolve to continue supporting Ukraine in exercising its right to defend itself.
We denounce Russia’s continuous use of disinformation campaigns that attempt to shift blame for the repercussions of the war to others, and we call on all partners to stop amplifying such propaganda and inaccurate narratives. It is critical to note that trade in agricultural products, including crops, is not affected by sanctions. The only blockages facing the international trade in cereals and other crops are the blockages Russia has imposed or caused by its war of aggression against Ukraine.
At the global level and here in Egypt, we are committed to alleviating the unnecessary suffering caused by Russia’s war and the Russian government’s weaponization of energy and food through various means. We also reaffirm the critical importance of continuing and expanding the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which enables Ukrainian ships carrying wheat and other products to reach international markets. And we stress the need for Russian authorities to increase the pace of inspections and operations of this initiative in order to meet global demand. Egypt is the number one Arab country to receive Ukrainian cereals shipments through the framework of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, and has received 34 Ukrainian shipments totaling around 787,000 metric tons since August 2022.
In responding to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, we call on the international community to demonstrate its principled support in the UN General Assembly by upholding the values of the UN Charter and international law. Later this week, the UN General Assembly will vote again to hold Russia to account for its actions. The international community must defend these core principles against Russia’s aggression, for the benefit of not only Ukraine, but for the entire international community.
The Ambassadors of Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Japan, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the European Union.