Peace must come before Russia annexes Ukraine’s Donbass region, Simon Coveney warns the United Nations

Peaceful solutions to the Ukraine war cannot wait until Russia conquers the contested Donbass region, Foreign Minister Simon Coveney told the United Nations Security Council.

In a tart speech to the UN’s main governing body, the Irish minister said Russian President Vladimir Putin could end “this war of his choosing” at any time. He said Russia, despite this reality, has launched an offensive in eastern Ukraine to consolidate ownership of the part of the country where its forces have invaded and come under heavy attack recently.

“I hear the narrative from far too many quarters that peace is only possible after the fight for Donbass. I cannot accept that logic – logic that leads directly to more death, more suffering and more displacement,” Mr Coveney told members of the UN Security Council.

Mr Coveney said by contrast, despite the brutality of Russian forces against his people, Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Zelenskyy has always remained open to diplomatic solutions.

In a direct challenge to Moscow, Mr Coveney urged Vladimir Putin to agree an immediate ceasefire on humanitarian grounds and then begin peace talks.

The Foreign Secretary said Ireland is a small country which is militarily neutral and does not claim to be a military power.

But Mr Coveney insisted that country had always wanted to work with the United Nations and had made significant efforts to win a rotating seat on its governing Security Council for a temporary two-year period.

“The only weapons we have are diplomacy, dialogue, facts, collective leadership and, most importantly, a shared commitment to international law and the UN Charter,” he said.

Mr. Coveney pointed out that the war in Ukraine has hit the poorest of the poor around the world – from the Middle East to Africa to Latin America. He said up to seven million people have been displaced in Ukraine and five million Ukrainians have been displaced beyond their home borders. Peace must come before Russia annexes Ukraine’s Donbass region, Simon Coveney warns the United Nations

Fry Electronics Team

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