Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Explanation of vote by Deputy Permanent Representative Anna Evstigneeva after the UNSC vote on a draft resolution on the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan


Russia abstained during the vote on a UK-proposed draft resolution of the Security Council on the termination of activities of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in the Sudan (UNITAMS).

Unfortunately, despite attempts on the part of our British colleagues to try to bring together the views of all Council members, which we appreciate, our key concerns have remained unaddressed.

The main purpose of this resolution is to respond to the request of the Sudanese leadership for the shutdown of UNITAMS. The request was clearly and unambiguously formulated in a letter of the Sudanese Minister of Foreign Affairs to the UN Secretary-General dated September 15, 2023, which the Permanent Representative of Sudan sent to the President of the Security Council on November 16. This position of the Sudanese is not accidental. We must say frankly that UNITAMS has failed to fulfill its tasks. Established upon Sudan’s request for support for its political process, the Mission no longer corresponds to the changed reality in the country. In fact, it acted in the interests of only one political group, which had no mass support in Sudanese society. I emphasize that UNITAMS’ withdrawal is a sovereign right of the Sudanese authorities.

What added significantly to undermining Sudanese confidence in UNITAMS was the activities of the former Special Representative of the Secretary-General and the failure of some donors to deliver on their pledges of economic assistance for political reasons. Many of the Mission's mandated tasks ended up staying on paper for years. Instead of helping to resolve the crisis, UNITAMS has only exacerbated the situation, and relations between the UN and the Sudanese leadership have been undermined.

We assume that our common goal was to turn this sad page in Sudan's interaction with the United Nations and to create a favorable setting for the productive work of Mr. Ramtane Lamamra, whom Secretary-General appointed his Personal Envoy for Sudan. The resolution that we adopted today should have accomplished these tasks. Alas, thanks to the efforts of some of our Western colleagues, it has essentially turned into a tool to put pressure on Khartoum.

We understand the concerns of some of our colleagues who point to the fact that the drawdown of UNITAMS is taking place amidst worsening humanitarian situation in Sudan. However, one should be mindful that the humanitarian and political components had already been removed from the UNITAMS mandate. Humanitarian agencies of the United Nations will remain active in Sudan. We call on them to step up assistance in these difficult times for the country.


We cannot agree with the provisions that envisage preparing a report on the situation in Sudan in the absence of representatives from the Mission. As we have repeatedly seen, whatever documents are composed under such conditions may lack grounds and credibility. Risks that they may become politicized increase.

However, some members of the Council do not see it as a problem. The main thing for them is to retain the ability to exert pressure on countries under UNSC consideration and to impose through such documents an agenda that would be completely alien for them. This behavior reflects the disdainful attitude of the collective West towards the problems of the global South, and also runs in the spirit of neocolonial approaches. They have long outlived their usefulness but the West still works hard to revive them.


I would like to take this opportunity to wish every success to the Personal Envoy of the Secretary-General, Ramtane Lamamra, as well as constructive and unbiased interaction with all Sudanese parties. At the same time, we believe it important that all efforts to resolve the crisis in Sudan should prioritize the objectives of achieving peace and stability, upholding the interests of the Sudanese, and maintaining the inviolability of sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Sudan.

As for the report on the situation in Sudan, which is due in 90 days' time, I hope that it will focus entirely on the successful and complete withdrawal of UNITAMS.

Thank you.

Video of the statement