Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Statement by Representative of the Russian Federation Mr.Taras Pronin at the Security Council meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict

We would like to thank the delegations of the Netherlands, Sweden, Kuwait and Côte d’Ivoire for preparing the text of resolution 2417 (2018).

We are particularly grateful to our Dutch colleagues for coordinating it and for facilitating its agreement. We have noted our partners’ professionalism and constructive approach to problem-solving and finding consensus-based language for a number of delegations’ most sensitive issues.

We are grateful for their willingness to consider the priorities and concerns of all delegations during the course of a quite complex negotiation process, which has ultimately enabled us to achieve a balanced document supported by all Council members. We continue to believe that the problem of food security is complex and involves many factors.

Armed conflicts are only one of the issues that can have a negative effect on supplying a population with food. We also have to take into account important factors such as fluctuations in the global price of raw materials and manufactured goods, imbalances in global food distribution, the consequences of natural disasters, and climate change. Another important item on that list are unilateral economic restrictions and sanctions.

All of those factors, to a lesser or greater extent, make it difficult to ensure food security around the world, something that research by the United Nations specialized humanitarian agencies clearly confirms. S/PV.8267 Protection of civilians in armed conflict 24/05/2018 4/4 18-15893 This problem cannot be solved on the political front alone. It extends far beyond the scope of the Security Council.

Ensuring that all parties comply with international humanitarian law, which is the point of this resolution, is certainly an important criterion for success, but it is no less important to combine efforts on every front to create opportunities and capacities for local food production, stabilize global commodity markets, liberalize trade, mitigate the effects of natural disasters and refrain from unilateral restrictive measures. It goes without saying that this is a labour-intensive process, but until we take that path, humanitarian needs will only increase.

Humanitarian assistance can treat the symptoms, but it cannot cure the disease itself. The continued worrying situation in four countries where the threat of starvation was announced last year only confirms that fact. Without comprehensive efforts by the international community to create a more just socioeconomic system, the burden on humanitarian agencies, in real terms, is only going to increase.

For our part we will continue to provide them with support, and we encourage them in turn to work with full commitment and respect for the guiding principles of humanitarian assistance, as the resolution that we have adopted today stipulates.