According to news reports, Russian President Vladimir Putin has formally recognized separatist regions in Ukraine’s east as independent states.
In a statement issued by Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric, the UN chief calls for “the peaceful settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, in accordance with the Minsk Agreements, as endorsed by the Security Council in resolution 2202 (2015)”.
Moreover, Mr. Guterres considers Russia’s decision to be “a violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and inconsistent with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations”.
Cease hostilities, immediately
Amid an intense spike in shelling in eastern Ukraine by opposing sides, the concentration of Russian troops reportedly continues to increase at the country’s borders.
The Secretary-General is urging all relevant actors to focus their efforts on “ensuring an immediate cessation of hostilities, protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure, preventing any actions and statements that may further escalate the dangerous situation in and around Ukraine and prioritizing diplomacy to address all issues peacefully”.
Mr. Dujarric assured that in line with the relevant General Assembly resolutions, the UN remains fully supportive of the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders.
The UN chief was planning to make and official visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but in light of the deteriorating situation regarding Ukraine, he has cancelled the mission.