Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Explanation of vote by Charge d'Affaires of the Russian Federation Dmitry Polyanskiy after the UNSC vote on a draft resolution renewing the sanctions regime for the Central African Republic


At the outset, we would like to congratulate the delegation of Brazil on successful conclusion of UNSC Presidency this month. We appreciate the professionalism of our colleagues. We also welcome Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Central African Republic Sylvie Baïpo-Temon to this meeting.

Russia abstained during the vote on a draft resolution on renewal of the sanctions regime for the Central African Republic that was proposed by France. Nevertheless, we note the efforts of the French delegation to bring positions of Council members closer to one another.

Previously in this chamber, and during the consultations on this resolution, we made it clear that the Security Council finally needs to react to repeated requests of the CAR government to lift sanctions affecting deliveries of arms and military-use products for the needs of CAR’s enforcement bodies. In October last year, President Touadera of the CAR again invoked the wisdom Council asking to lift the arms embargo that prevented his country from combating illegal armed formations effectively. It is no secret that restrictive measures that were imposed on the CAR created trouble for Bangui in the first place. As for the fighters, they were still able to receive all the arms they needed via all possible channels.

In June last year, President Lourenço of Angola visited New York in his capacity as Chair of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region and spoke at the Security Council in support of the Central African Republic.

The African Union also expressed its position clearly, unanimously, and repeatedly. It requested the Security Council to lift the embargo so national defense and security forces of the CAR could uphold their constitutional mandate effectively, protecting the country and its people. The voice of African states was not heard again, despite numerous pledges to account for opinions of regional organizations that had been made in this chamber earlier. This situation once again reiterates the importance of further enhancement of African solidarity on a wide range of issues pertaining to continental security.

The emerging trend to oppose the opinion of Africans regarding full-fledged lifting of sanctions is a very alarming development. This was the case with South Sudan, the DRC, and for several years by now – with the CAR. Why are those who advocate for preserving the sanctions regimes are so sure they know the situation better than the African Union? In this, we see the desire of Western states to preserve some levers of political dominance, while using UNSC sanctions mechanisms that are critical for international cooperation. We do not believe it is a constructive approach, i.a. for upholding effective sanctions regimes.

Arrogant stance of our Western colleagues to Africans goes side by side with their striving to cast a shadow on Russian-African cooperation, besmirch efforts of Russian experts who render assistance to some African governments in stabilizing the situation in their countries and training of security forces. This is what you call real assistance on the ground – and not the advice and mentorship that we see coming from other continents.  

We take note of statements by some Western capitals that Russia’s policy in Africa allegedly means Africa no good or that our actions there be of a malevolent nature. Those are clear and unconvincing attempts to set African countries against Russia.

Africans know the answer to this. The government of the CAR and other states welcome Russian assistance, pursue development of equal and respectful relations with us, value our historical ties.


It is obvious that the Security Council needs to revisit its approach to the situation in the Central African Republic. In our view, the resolution we adopted today does not fully meet the task of stabilizing the situation in that country. We see that it has changed dramatically since 2013, when UN sanctions regime was first introduced. A switch over to a notification regime is a meaningful, yet a belated step in this regard. We are convinced that a UNSC decision to abolish any form of sanctioning of efforts of a sovereign state to ensure its national security would be an adequate step, commensurate with the current state of affairs in the Central African Republic.

Thank you.