UAE's UN envoy urges leaders to end Russia-Ukraine war

Lana Nusseibeh calls for 'negotiated settlement' to conflict

The Russia-Ukraine conflict 'should end now', Lana Nusseibeh told the United Nations Security Council. UN
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The UAE's envoy to the UN has urged leaders from Russia and Ukraine to bring an end to the conflict between their countries.

Lana Nusseibeh, assistant minister for political affairs and the UAE's ambassador and permanent representative to the UN, told a Security Council briefing on Wednesday that "the war will only end through a negotiated settlement".

Ms Nusseibeh said one third of Ukrainians had been displaced from their homes, with 6.6 million seeking refuge across Europe.

She said the conflict exacerbated food shortages and led to a rise in the price of commodities, "both of which add to the daily hardship suffered by hundreds of millions of people around the world".

"The UAE strongly applauds the agreements brokered with the support of the Secretary General and the Republic of Turkiye to facilitate the export of grain, food supplies and fertilisers to global markets," she said.

"This rare example of tangible progress cannot, however, be the last. It must incentivise more concerted efforts to mitigate the impact of this conflict on the lives of those most in need, and hopefully ensure that we are not here six months from now marking a year of conflict and further global disruption."

Wednesday marked six months since Russian forces invaded Ukraine. The war has so far killed 5,800 civilians, including 972 children, the latest UN figures estimate.

August 24 was also Ukraine’s 31st Independence Day.

Shared responsibility

Ms Nusseibeh said the UN Charter provided the tools to address the peaceful settlement of disputes, but that this was futile without political will.

"In turn, this requires us — all of us — to recognise that the war will only end through a negotiated settlement and that all wars must eventually end as they have done countless times in human history," she said.

"There is value in the council’s meetings on Ukraine when they are complemented with action laser-focused on alleviating the suffering of civilians and finding a political path to this war’s end.

"We cannot change the past but what happens next is a responsibility we all share."

Ms Nusseibeh said agreements on agricultural exports and support for the International Atomic Energy Agency to send a mission to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant "could unlock broader political discussions".

"We need to work hard to preserve and expand these windows towards viable diplomatic initiatives aimed at de-escalation and resolution," she said.

She said a peaceful, sustainable resolution relied on the UN Charter and international law as guiding principles.

"Six months in, our call for a cessation of hostilities throughout Ukraine is as relevant as it has ever been," she said.

"We cannot become inured to this war. The stakes are too high; every life is too precious.

"The conflict should end now and we need to see leaders from both sides commit to charting that difficult path forward with all of our support."

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Updated: August 25, 2022, 7:27 AM