Presidents of Estonia, Slovakia and Ukraine referred to Georgia in their statements at the General Debate of the United Nations General Assembly on September 26.
Below are the excerpts from their statements.
President of Estonia, Kersti Kaljulaid: “Aggression should be called aggression, war is war, and occupation remains occupation. Regardless if it’s Africa or Europe that we are talking about. I am deeply touched by the misery that war and conflict bring, whether it’s talking with internally displaced women and children in occupied Eastern Ukraine. Or with Georgian politicians being told that due to occupation their country will be forever denied full participation in the democratic world in the formats we, luckier others, so cherish…
Ongoing military aggression in Eastern Ukraine continues in the very heart of Europe. Crimean Peninsula remains occupied, as do parts of Georgia, and there is no resolution of the long-term and violent conflicts in Africa. It is hard to tolerate these sad issues. Yet it is no solution to mince words to make ourselves feel better. For those in distress, recognition of their true situation, together with the humble recognition that we cannot do much more than commiserate, is offering at least some hope. Some hope that one day things could be better. A hope that cannot feed on euphemisms avoiding straightforward admittance.”
President of Slovakia, Andrej Kiska: “The number of armed conflicts has increased in the recent years. Only in 2016 and 2017 the number of conflicts reached the peaks of the Cold War era. The civilian casualties rise. We are talking about hundreds of thousands of innocent people directly affected by conflicts and wars. Sovereignty and territorial integrity are the DNA of stability and security – globally and regionally. But the occupation of Georgia and Ukraine and destabilization in the region are just one of many examples that the respect of rules is being replaced by ruthless power politics.”
President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko: “Russia constantly multiplies the human tragedy, which lately received a new dimension: ecological. It poisons the Ukrainian soil and causes an environmental disaster not only in the occupied Crimea, but in Donbas as well. This has been a daily reality for Ukrainians for four years now. Thousands of deaths, destruction, displacement and human suffering. For my fellow citizens, these years have become a tremendous challenge – a test for their determination and solidarity, resilience and faith. Let us not forget what this war is about. Ukraine made a sovereign decision to live its way and to promote the Free World based on democratic values and rules. Russia punishes Ukraine for this decision. It kills. It ruins homes. It lies on industrial scale. It pretends that Ukraine, as well as Georgia “attacked themselves”…
Nothing will stop Moscow from continuing its aggressive expansionist policies if it does not face a united stand of the international community, if punishment for its actions does not become inevitable. It is due to the lack of relevant punishment that after Georgia came Ukraine, after Lytvinenko came Skripals, and after Aleppo came Idlib… Kremlin has no intention to stop.”