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Statement at Arria Meeting on "Circumstances of Maidan and its aftereffects in Donbass"

Thank you, Ambassador.


Let me take the opportunity to set out once again Ireland’s strong support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders and our support for Ukraine’s legitimate authorities.


Ireland also supports Ukraine's inclusive approach towards its citizens in the non‑government controlled areas including in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.


Ireland does not recognize the illegal annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol nor any political structure created on the basis of this attempted annexation.




I wish to reaffirm Ireland’s full support for the work of the Normandy format, the OSCE, the Trilateral Contact Group and the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine.


Let me recall that all signatories of the Minsk Agreements agreed on the need for the Special Monitoring Missions’s safe and secure access to the entire territory of Ukraine.


Ireland commends the constructive approach of Ukraine in the Normandy format and the Trilateral Contact Group and calls on Russia to reciprocate and to cooperate with the legitimate Government of Ukraine.


Ireland is concerned that there are continued violations of the Trilateral Contact Group agreements and reiterates that the ceasefire in force since last July must be used to move forward with the negotiations.


Ireland views the OSCE Border Observation Mission as an important confidence-building measure, and believes that its mandate should be broader in both scope and length. We therefore regret that only a two-month extension of the mandate could be agreed in Vienna last week. This limited extension creates an additional administrative burden on both the Mission and the OSCE and has a damaging impact on the overall political climate.  




We are also very concerned by the reduction of access for humanitarian organisations to the non-government controlled areas of the country.


The humanitarian situation remains deeply concerning, with millions of people still requiring humanitarian assistance. Ireland therefore calls for the easing of movement restrictions, to avoid exacerbating the humanitarian crisis. We urge Russia to implement the commitments it made at the Normandy Summit in Paris, as well as in the Trilateral Contact Group, so that the Shchastia and Zolote Entry-Exit Crossing Points become fully operational, and that all the currently closed Entry-Exit Crossing Points are reopened.


We also remain concerned about serious human rights violations and abuses linked to the conflict in eastern Ukraine, as reported by the Monitoring Mission of the OHCHR.


We reiterate our call on Russia to allow unhindered access of international organisations and human rights actors to the non‑government controlled areas of eastern Ukraine and the Crimean Peninsula, and to respect international humanitarian law.


Finally, Chair,


Ireland calls on all sides to create the necessary environment to enable the implementation of the Minsk Agreements to achieve a sustainable political settlement of the conflict and we call on the parties to act constructively within the Trilateral Contact Group and the Normandy format to this end.


Thank you Chair.


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