On the extension of the mandate of the Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine

As delivered by Ambassador Anne-Kirsti Karlsen at the Permanent Council, Vienna, 31 March 2022.

Mr. Chair,

Thank you for your efforts to extend the mandate of the SMM, which would have been our preferred option. The host country Ukraine is very much in favour of keeping the mission, and there is overwhelming support among participating States. We regret that the Russian Federation will not join consensus on this.

Collecting and analyzing facts about the situation on the ground, in an impartial and transparent manner, as the SMM has done for the past eight years, would have been very valuable in the present situation. An extended mandate would have allowed for that to happen once the security situation has improved. We continue to admire the professionalism, dedication, and courage with which the SMM staff have carried out their mandated tasks until their relocation and beyond.

We still see a role for the SMM in Ukraine. In the current situation, we therefore support the Chair in the ambition to continue consulting about the SMM mandate. In the meantime, it is important that the SMM is granted the means necessary to fulfil administrative tasks, and we therefore support the way forward proposed by the CiO and the Secretary General.

Norway will continue to be supportive to any efforts to extend the SMM mandate and to redeploy the mission in Ukraine. We will support the CiO, the OSCE troika and the Secretary General in that respect.

Thank you!