US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield said that “it is clear that Mr Putin has a plan to destroy and terrorize Ukraine”, adding that the United States is “concerned that the world must be prepared for a very long and very difficult road”. forward.”
“If the past two weeks have shown us anything, it is that the Ukrainian people are not giving up. And many Russians themselves, including many Russian soldiers, do not want this war,” Thomas-Greenfield said at a UN Security Council meeting.
Thomas-Greenfield added that “Putin is clearly willing to sacrifice the lives of thousands of Russian soldiers to achieve his personal ambitions.”
“We have been warning Moscow for weeks that Russia will eventually be weaker, not stronger, for launching this war. This already appears to be true,” she said. “The question is how much devastation President Putin is willing to wreak for this huge mistake.”
In her remarks, Thomas-Greenfield said the US is “outraged by increasing reports of attacks by Moscow that have harmed Ukrainian civilians in its unprovoked and unjustified war against the Ukrainian people”, and expressed growing concern “about the protection of civilians in this conflict, especially women and girls vulnerable to gender-based violence, LGBTQI Ukrainians, as well as the Ukrainian population of older adults and people with disabilities.”
She said her Polish colleague told her that 100 refugees a minute came to Poland from Ukraine.
“We also call for protection and care for all vulnerable children, including separated and unaccompanied children and those in institutional care,” said Thomas-Greenfield, adding: “Children should never, ever be involved in conflict – period. “
“Children should never get involved in conflict. They must be protected,’ she repeated.
“As UNICEF has reported, we already know that dozens of children were killed in Putin’s war. And as we work to confirm cases, we know the actual numbers are actually much greater,” she said. “Young children have also been deeply traumatized by the violence and destruction. They’ve been through so many things that they’ve stopped talking. The physical and psychological wounds of this war will last for a long time.”
Thomas-Greenfield described Ukrainian cities “under siege, under relentless Russian shelling”.
“Hospitals are running out of supplies, food is decreasing and civilian casualties are increasing, while the most vulnerable – the disabled, the elderly, children – continue to bear the brunt of the suffering. We have seen besieged before – from Leningrad to Aleppo. These are tragedies of immense proportions,” she said.
Thomas-Greenfield called on Moscow to make a “firm, clear, public and unequivocal commitment to enable and facilitate immediate, unimpeded humanitarian access for humanitarian partners in Ukraine.”
“Very specifically, we call on the Russian Federation to accept and honor in good faith Ukrainian proposals for a time-bound humanitarian safe passage to specific, agreed-upon sites. We call for the establishment of a ground-level reporting system that will facilitate the safe movement of humanitarian convoys and flights,” said Thomas-Greenfield.
She also called for “Russia to change course, withdraw its troops, de-escalate through diplomacy” and said the US “supports Ukraine’s call for a ceasefire”.
“In the meantime, we applaud those who are doing everything in their power to alleviate the suffering Putin has unleashed on the Ukrainian people,” she said.
She noted that the US is “closely coordinating with the government of Ukraine, neighboring countries and international organizations, including those within the UN system, to monitor the situation and will work with them to address humanitarian needs both in Ukraine and in the region.” to deal with.”
“Whatever course the Russian invasion takes, we must do everything – and I emphasize everything – everything we can do to help the people of Ukraine,” said Thomas-Greenfield.
“Kiev still stands, and we stand with Kiev,” she concluded. “We stand behind the Ukrainians.”