Tuesday, May 24 2016 03:06 EEST
World politics: Statement by President Poroshenko at Leaders’ Segment of the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul

Dear Mr. Secretary-General, Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen, First of all, I would like to praise a timely initiative of the Secretary-General to convene this Summit at these turbulent times when we face humanitarian problems of the scale unseen since World War II. Let me also thank our Turkish hosts for their excellent organization of the Summit and outstanding hospitality...

Being here today among so many leaders committed to tackling humanitarian challenges, I can’t help sharing deep concerns of the Secretary-General with the state of our humanity. Indeed, over the United Nations history, we have been investing considerable joint efforts into promoting peace and security, fighting poverty, preventing climate change and so on.

Yet, the world is again to a dangerous extent rocked with violent conflicts, social fracture, natural and man-made disasters. Universal values of the United Nations Charter are put into question by one of its principal designated guardians. Geopolitical ambitions are listed above principles and norms of the international law and even above human lives.

Dear colleagues,

It is our major responsibility to prevent and stop conflicts which are undoubtedly the biggest threat to humanity and the biggest trigger of humanitarian needs. I know very well what I say now.

For over 2 years already, my country is a target of Russia’s armed aggression. The humanitarian account of this aggression is about 10,000 Ukrainians killed, over 20,000 wounded, and roughly 1.8 million internally displaced.

Based on Ukraine’s experience of confronting the Russian aggression, I would like to outline three crucial elements how we can enhance our response to the conflicts and, as a result, to the humanitarian challenges.

First, we must do our best to restore respect for the international law and ensure efficiency of international instruments so that conflicts be settled and their perpetrators be brought to justice. And this responsibility is collective.

Second, to succeed on this path, we have to stand up in unity and solidarity and exercise robust political leadership. And we have to be decisive and consistent. We must say ‘enough is enough’ and stick to this postulate till the things come back to status quo ante. Here, I refer in particular to the sanctions debate. No one shall enjoy impunity. Only as we curb the conflicts will we be able to tackle a lion’s part of the humanitarian challenges.

Third, Ukraine’s experience in Donbas suggests that it is very important to pay due attention not only to meeting immediate humanitarian needs but also to finding lasting solutions. It is important to pay long-term political attention to and ensure sustainable investment into fragile and post-conflict settings.


Ukraine expresses its full support for the Agenda for Humanity, which is indeed an important platform for action, change and mutual accountability. We do believe that a global commitment to the Agenda for Humanity can and will deliver a genuine change that we all aspire to.

Ukraine is ready to play its part in supporting the implementation of the Agenda for Humanity and encourage other countries to do likewise.

Thank you for attention.

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