The Embassy’s comment on the alleged statement of Lord Balfe to Russian media concerning the status of the occupied Crimea
The Embassy took note of a statement as some Russian media refer to the one of Lord Balfe claiming that Crimea is a “historical part of Russia” and that Moscow “has fulfilled the will of the Crimeans by taking the peninsula back”.
The Embassy has reached the Lord Balfe’s office to confirm the said or rebut the false attributions.
In the meantime, we would like to note that the whole civilized world, including all the leading international organizations, has already acknowledged the fact that Russia has brutally and cowardly annexed Crimea where it nowadays commits systematic violations of human rights, seeking to destroy the identity of Ukrainians and the indigenous people of the peninsula — the Crimean Tatars.
Resorting to the military aggression against Ukraine, Russia has violated fundamental norms and principles of international law. Russian occupation and further attempted annexation of Crimea, as well as Russian illegal actions in Donbas, fall under the definition of aggression according to the UN General Assembly Resolution “Definition of Aggression”. The following actions are a serious crime against international peace, which entails international responsibility of the Russian Federation at the state level and international criminal responsibility of its leadership.
In this regard, we are grateful to the Government of the United Kingdom political and diplomatic efforts aimed at countering Russian aggression. The United Kingdom was one of the countries which supported the UN General Assembly Resolution «Territorial Integrity of Ukraine» (27 March 2014) which confirmed the internationally recognized borders of Ukraine and the absence of any legal basis to change the status of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. The same stance was confirmed by the UN General Assembly resolution “Situation of human rights in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine)” of 19 December 2016. Besides that, this resolution unambiguously defines Russia as an occupying power and places all the responsibility for human rights violation in Crimea upon Moscow.
We would also like to recall numerous statements UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson have made that Crimea is Ukraine and Russia must return it as well as that sanctions against Russia must remain in place.
Ukraine’s Foreign Service will continue putting all its efforts to rebuff the Kremlin’s nasty propaganda which is being actively spread in the Western societies.