Explanation of vote by Permanent Representative Vassily Nebenzia before UNSC procedural vote on inviting a representative of Donbas as a briefer
We insist on participation of our invited briefer in this meeting. Our delegation proposed Ms.Daria Morozova while being guided by only one consideration, which is to give the Council an opportunity to receive firsthand information about the catastrophic humanitarian situation in Donbas that is inseparable from the humanitarian situation in Ukraine. Since 2014, the people of Donbas have had to live under attacks by the armed forces of Ukraine, suffer hardships with no reaction on the part of the global community. Our Western colleagues carefully avoid touching upon this issue – in the spirit of their policy of whitewashing Kiev’s crimes, no matter how heinous they are.
The briefer whom we proposed is a native from Donbas who has spent her entire life in that region and has engaged in humanitarian activities since 2014, helping her fellow citizens who suffer from Kiev’s aggression. Among other things, she engages in facilitating detainee exchanges. She used to take part in the Contract Group for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements. She has got unique experience and expertise. On a daily basis, she communicates with ordinary people of Donbas and is ready to share her observations that may give the Security Council a glimpse of the real situation on the ground.
We proceed from the assumption that our proposed briefer fully meets the criteria of Rule 39 of the provisional rules of procedure. We suggest that she speak in her personal capacity as a humanitarian activist.
We call on all Council members to support the initiative to invite Ms.Daria Morozova as a briefer to this meeting. Counter to what Western delegations say, your support will not mean your recognition of any international legal realia. These are completely different issues. This is i.a. an issue of freedom of speech. At this point, it is about inviting a competent briefer so the Council can receive additional information on the humanitarian situation, as set out by Rule 39. Otherwise, this meeting will become yet another lopsided Western gathering that ignores primary causes of the Ukrainian crisis.