Wed. Jul 24th, 2024
G7 Italy 2024 Foreign Ministers’ Statement on Steadfast Support for Ukraine

The text of the following statement was released by the G7 foreign ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America and the High Representative of the European Union.

We, the G7 Foreign Ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, and the High Representative of the European Union, strongly condemn Russia’s ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine. We reaffirm our unwavering determination to support democratic Ukraine as it defends its freedom, sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity, within its internationally recognized borders.  We pay tribute to the bravery and resilience of the Ukrainian people, fighting for their freedom and democratic future.

Ten years on since Russia’s illegal occupation of Crimea and its setting up of unrecognized proxy regimes in parts of the Donbas and into the third year of its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, we demand that the Russian Federation immediately, completely, and unconditionally withdraws all of its military forces and equipment from the internationally recognized territory of Ukraine. Russia can end this war today.

We call on all countries to uphold international law and in no way to validate or condone Russia’s attempts to acquire territory by force, in violation of the basic tenets of the UN Charter. We will never recognize the legitimacy of so-called “referenda” or “elections”, past or future, held by Russia in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine, nor their results. Illegally holding Russian Presidential elections in Ukraine’s sovereign territories was an outrageous violation of international law.

We will continue to support Ukraine’s right of self-defense and reiterate our commitment to Ukraine’s long-term security. Based on the Joint Declaration of Support for Ukraine we endorsed in Vilnius in July 2023, we are fully engaged on finalizing and implementing specific, bilateral, long-term security commitments and arrangements with Ukraine, which several G7 countries and other partners have already signed. We are stepping up our defense and security assistance to Ukraine and are increasing our production and delivery capabilities to assist the country. We also support efforts to assist Ukraine building a future force capable of self-defense and deterrence against all aggression.

We express our resolve in particular to bolster Ukraine’s air defense capabilities to save lives and protect critical infrastructure. We will also work with partners towards this end. In this context we appreciate the Immediate Action for Air Defense Initiative (IAAD) proposed by Germany.

Together with international partners, we are determined to continue to provide military, financial, political, humanitarian, economic, and development support to Ukraine and its people. We welcome the EU’s adoption of the Ukraine facility of EUR 50 billion, the EU “Ukraine Assistance Fund” of EUR 5 billion. We also welcome additional support G7 countries have approved, as well as the swift delivery of budget support in the first quarter of 2024 by Canada and Japan. We urge the approval of further support from other international partners.

We will continue to help Ukraine repair and restore its critical energy and environmental infrastructure and we re-emphasize our strong support for Ukraine’s energy security, including through the G7+ Ukraine Energy Coordination Group. We express our deepest concern about the reported use of chemical agents by Russia, as a method of warfare.

Russia must pay for the damage and devastation it is causing. We condemn Russia’s recent missile and drone strikes against Ukraine’s energy infrastructure and cities across Ukraine. We are determined to ensure full accountability and we support Ukraine in obtaining compensation for the loss, injury and damage resulting from Russia’s aggression. We welcome the launch of the Register of Damage caused by the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine. Russia’s sovereign assets in our jurisdictions will remain immobilized until Russia ceases its aggression and pays for the damage it has caused.

We welcome the adoption by the EU of the legal acts concerning extraordinary revenues held by private entities stemming directly from Russia’s immobilized sovereign assets also in view to exploring ways to maximize the benefit for Ukraine that can be obtained from these revenues.

We will continue to explore all possible avenues to aid Ukraine in obtaining compensation from Russia, consistent with our respective legal systems and international law. As requested by Leaders, we will continue our work and advise ahead of the Apulia Summit on all possible avenues and feasible options by which immobilized Russian sovereign assets could be made use of to support Ukraine, consistent with our respective legal systems and international law.

Ukraine’s reconstruction, starting with early recovery measures and addressing the current energy emergency, remains key priorities. We will continue to work with the Ukrainian authorities and International Financial Institutions through the Multi-agency Donor Coordination Platform and by leveraging private investments. We welcome the Steering Committee of the enlarged MDCP which took place for the first time in Kyiv on 10 April. We highlight the importance of gender-responsive recovery and the need to address the different needs of women, children and disabled persons as well as other population groups who have been disproportionately affected by Russia’s war of aggression. The reintegration of disabled combatants and civilians remains a priority. Further to the successful Japan-Ukraine Conference for the Promotion of Economic Growth and Reconstruction, we look forward to the Ukraine Recovery Conferences, to be hosted in Berlin in 2024 and in Rome in 2025.

We welcome the European Council’s decision in December 2023 to open negotiations for Ukraine’s accession to the European Union. We praise Ukraine’s progress in its reform efforts, especially to reinforce the justice system and the rule of law and to fight corruption. These endeavors are in line with the Euro-Atlantic path Ukraine has embraced. We will continue to support Ukraine as it works to implement further reforms to strengthen its democracy.

We reiterate our support for Ukraine’s efforts to promote a comprehensive, just and lasting peace, consistent with international law, including the UN Charter, with respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We will continue to work to achieve the widest possible international support for the key principles and objectives of Ukraine’s Peace Formula, also in view of the high-level international conference planned in Switzerland in mid-June. Russia’s irresponsible nuclear rhetoric and its posture of strategic intimidation, including its announced deployment of nuclear weapons in Belarus are unacceptable. We reaffirm that any use of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons by Russia would be met with severe consequences. In this context, threats by Russia of nuclear weapons use, let alone any use of nuclear weapons by Russia, in the context of its war of aggression against Ukraine are inadmissible.

We condemn Russia’s seizure and continued control and militarization of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, which poses severe risks for nuclear safety and security, with implications for the broader international community. We support the International Atomic Energy Agency’s efforts directed at mitigating such risks, including through the continuous presence of IAEA experts and its focus on ensuring nuclear safety and security at the site.

Despite Russia’s attempts to undermine global food security, Ukraine’s success in securing a corridor through the Black Sea has significantly expanded food exports and continues to help feed the world. We pledge our enduring support to those efforts, including through the EU solidarity lanes and other appropriate mechanisms.

We remain committed to fully implementing and enforcing our sanctions on Russia and adopting new measures as necessary. We will continue to counter, in close cooperation with third countries, any attempts to evade and circumvent our sanctions and export restrictions. We call on financial institutions to refrain from supporting Russia’s defense industrial base and we will take appropriate steps, consistent with our legal systems, to disrupt and deter this behavior. We will impose additional sanctions on companies and individuals in third countries who help Russia acquire tools and other equipment that aid Russian weapons production or military-industrial development.

We will continue to apply significant pressure on Russian revenues from energy and other sectors. We call on all countries to reduce their imports from Russia which are supporting its war. We will continue to take steps to tighten compliance and enforcement of the oil price cap. While working to maintain supply stability, we will respond to price cap violations, including by imposing additional sanctions measures on those engaged in deceptive practices while transporting Russian oil and against the networks Russia has developed to extract additional revenue from price cap violations. We will continue taking steps to limit Russia’s future energy revenues. We will continue to impede Russia’s development of future energy projects and disrupt its development of alternatives for energy shipping and other services. We also welcome the steps taken by the UK and U.S. to stop the trade of new Russian base metals on their global metal exchanges. We will continue efforts to reduce Russia’s revenues from metals.

We condemn in the strongest possible terms North Korea’s unlawful export of arms to Russia and for use in Ukraine. In particular, we condemn North Korea’s exports and Russia’s procurement of North Korea’s ballistic missiles in direct violation of relevant UN Security Council Resolutions and call upon them to immediately cease such activities.

We call upon Iran to stop assisting Russia’s war effort in Ukraine. Any steps by Iran to transfer ballistic missiles and related technology to Russia, would represent a substantive, material escalation, and t we would respond swiftly and in a coordinated manner, including with new and significant measures against Iran. We call on all countries to prevent the supply of components or other items to Iran’s UAV programmes, which support Russia’s war effort.

We express our strong concern about transfers to Russia from businesses in the People’s Republic of China of dual-use materials and weapons components that Russia is using to advance its military production. This is enabling Russia to reconstitute and revitalize its defense industrial base, posing a threat both to Ukraine and to international peace and security. China should ensure that this support stops, as it will only prolong this illegal war of aggression in violation of the UN Charter and increase the threat that Russia poses to its neighbors.

We reiterate our condemnation of the Belarusian regime’s complicity in Russia’s war against Ukraine. We express our continued concern over the regime’s continuing repression of independent media, civil society, and of opposition and citizens that peacefully express their views. We also condemn the ill-treatment of political prisoners and ask for their immediate and unconditional release.

There can be no impunity for war crimes such as attacks against civilians and critical civilian infrastructure, humanitarian workers, deportation of Ukrainians, including forcible transfer and deportation of Ukrainian children, or grave and serious violations of children’s rights and conflict-related sexual violence. Those responsible for crimes, which are of concern to the international community, will be held to account consistent with international law. We welcome initiatives to address Russia’s   unlawful deportation of Ukrainian children.

We firmly reject the Russian authorities’ baseless attempts to blame Ukraine for the tragic terrorist attack near Moscow on March 22, which was claimed by ISIS. We call on Russia to stop using this tragedy in its disinformation efforts against Ukraine. We remain steadfast in our fight against terrorism, as illustrated by several G7 countries continuing to share information with Russia on this issue.

We will not relent from holding those responsible for Alexei Navalny’s death accountable, including by continuing to impose restrictive measures and other appropriate actions in response to human rights violations and abuses in Russia. We condemn the Kremlin’s systematic repression of dissenting voices, and we call on Russia to release all political prisoners.

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originally published at Politics - JISIP NEWS