HRC51 – Item 10 – ID with HC on Ukraine – NB8 Statement by Mr. Urmas Reinsalu, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Estonia – 4 October 2022

Thank you, Mr President,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden and my own country Estonia.

We thank the Acting High Commissioner for the update.

Each day, the world witnesses the horror of Russia´s continuously committed atrocities in Ukraine. We are appalled by the discoveries of mass graves in liberated areas, recently in Izyum, and the ever-increasing number of civilian casualties across the country.

Since the full-scale invasion, reportedly over one million Ukrainians have been unlawfully deported to Russia or unlawfully forcibly displaced to Russian occupied territories. Ukrainian children are unlawfully deported for illegal adoptions in Russia. We urge Russia to abide by its obligations under international law and end these unlawful deportations and forcible displacements of Ukrainian civilians, including of children.

The aggressor´s brutal network of filtration camps masks hideous abuses and violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. The weight of these crimes falls, not least on women and girls, who face rape and sexual and gender-based violence and abuse.

We stand with Ukraine and commit ourselves to the pursuit of justice and accountability for Russia’s trail of criminality in Ukraine. We will never recognize Russia’s illegal sham “referenda” in Ukraine’s occupied territories and their illegitimate annexation. All states are under an international law obligation to not recognize this illegal annexation.

Madam Acting High Commissioner, what steps could the international community take to disengage Russia from taking control over a sovereign country´s population?

I thank you!