Norway has aligned itself with the statement delivered on behalf of the European Union. In my national capacity, though, I would like to make the following remarks:
Russia’s premeditated and illegal war against Ukraine wages on. This aggressive invasion is in breach of nearly all the commitments and principles the participating States of the OSCE have signed up to.
Yesterday, in this very room, our Russian colleague underscored that mutually respectful dialogue and search for common ground cannot be overestimated in the context of the growing military-political confrontation. I could not agree more. However, the dialogue and the search for common ground must be conducted in good faith. By all.
Yesterday, also in this very room, our Russian colleague claimed that the root causes of the current crisis are the attempts of several states, primarily NATO members, to strengthen their own security at the expense of the security of others. That is simply not true. Russia is the sole culprit behind the war in Ukraine and decided to violate all the principles and commitments it has signed up to and embark on this war of choice.
So, in order to secure dialogue in good faith, and be able to reach common ground, we need to relate to the same reality. This is not possible if Russia pursues its false narrative.
I am content that the OSCE continues its activities to assist Ukraine, in Ukraine. This despite Russia’s adamantine insistence on closing the PCU and SMM. Now, through a donor-funded support program, the OSCE is able to further the important work of addressing Ukraine’s needs, including humanitarian demining, combatting human trafficking and dealing with the environmental damage caused by the war.
We commend Ukraine for its readiness to cooperate with the OSCE.
I once again reiterate our call on Russia to come to its senses. To respect its international obligations and commitments, and to withdraw all troops from Ukraine.
And, to engage in dialogue in good faith.
Allow me also to join the Secretary General and others in this room in their demand that national OSCE members, who are deprived of their liberty in non-government-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk, be released immediately and unconditionally.
Norway stands with Ukraine, and we reiterate our full support for and solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and our unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders and territorial waters.
Norway’s substantial military, humanitarian and financial support to Ukraine will continue.