Mr. President,

We take note of the remarks of the different briefers.

Let me start with recent developments in Ukraine: Last week, Ukraine was hit by one of the heaviest missile and drone attacks since the beginning of the war. The strikes have again cost lives, damaged energy infrastructure and other facilities in Kiev and elsewhere in the country. Switzerland condemns these attacks. We recall that attacks against civilians and civilian objects, indiscriminate attacks and disproportionate attacks are prohibited under international humanitarian law.

Mr. President,

An old saying states that the first casualty of war is the truth.

Switzerland stresses the importance of avoiding propaganda, hate speech and deliberately divisive language that creates distrust between people and governments in all circumstances. The misinformation and propaganda that accompany the war against Ukraine reinforce mistrust, deepen divisions and increase hostility.

We oppose all attempts to justify Russia's military aggression against Ukraine. They fuel tensions and are used for political purposes. We recall the firm position of the UN General Assembly against this war and the decision of the International Court of Justice ordering the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukrainian territory.

The clear condemnation of this military aggression is based on the principles of the UN Charter and the international legal order in force and is not directed against the Russian people. Switzerland condemns this serious violation of international law and fully supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. With regard to the prospects of finding a peaceful, just and lasting solution, and of restoring confidence in such a solution, we insist that Russia must cease all combat operations and withdraw its troops from the Ukrainian territory without delay. Respect for international law, diplomatic solutions and accountability for all violations of international law are essential to achieve this goal.

Mr. President,

Information that is fabricated and disseminated to cause harm can never form the basis for frank and constructive dialogue. As members of the Security Council, we have a special responsibility to refrain from and oppose harmful rhetoric, in order to promote peace and cooperation.

I thank you.