Permanent Mission of Australia
to the United Nations
New York

221010 - UN General Assembly 11th Emergency Special Session on Ukraine


10 October 2022

Statement by H.E. The Hon. Mitch Fifield, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Australia to the United Nations

Australia is proud to stand alongside Ukraine and many, many other Member States here today. Member States determined to uphold the UN Charter. Member States determined to condemn Russia’s sham referenda in the occupied regions of Ukraine. Member States determined to condemn Russia’s illegal attempted annexation of Ukrainian territory.

We remain committed to the sovereignty, independence, unity, and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders.

Let’s be clear:

Russia’s sham referenda in the occupied areas of Ukraine have no legal effect. Let me repeat that. Russia’s sham referenda in the occupied areas of Ukraine have no legal effect.

Russia’s attempted annexation is illegal. It is a dangerous escalation.

We urge all member states to support the resolution before us.

Doing so will demonstrate our unreserved commitment to upholding international law, including our obligations under the UN Charter.

We all seek a peaceful and prosperous world where sovereignty and territorial integrity are respected.

We must show all those contemplating acts of aggression that the international community stands together in firm defence of these principles.

Australia will continue to stand with the brave people of Ukraine.

Australia responded swiftly to President Putin’s attempted illegal annexation of the Ukrainian regions of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia. With additional targeted financial sanctions and travel bans on 28 Russian-appointed separatists, ministers and senior officials.

Australia has also filed an intervention in the International Court of Justice case brought by Ukraine against Russia. Supporting Ukraine's claims that Russia has violated the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

These actions underscore Australia’s support for Ukraine and the resolution before us today. And reinforce Australia's strong objection to the actions of President Putin and those carrying out his orders.

Australia continues to call on Russia to comply with its obligations under international law, including the UN Charter. And immediately withdraw its forces from Ukraine.

We call for peace. A peace that is not just the absence of war. But that enables the people of Ukraine to live according to their own rules. According to their own sovereignty. And to have their own freedom.

Australia pays tribute to the remarkable resilience and courage shown by the Ukrainian people.

Now is the time for the international community to show courage and conviction to support Ukraine.

Now is the time to act.

To act together.