as for delivery by Ambassador of Ukraine Yevhenii Tsymbaliuk
at the 3rd annual subcommittee meeting of the CPR to UNEP
on Agenda item 6: Possible Resolutions proposed by Member States
28 October 2015
Ahead of the upcoming UNEA-2 session Ukraine, being mindful of the necessity to safeguard nature in times of armed conflicts, has decided to propose for consideration a resolution titled “Protection of environment in conflict-affected areas”.
Armed conflicts can have irreparable impact on the vulnerable natural system. Different types of the damages inflicted by a conflict may vary from desertification of wetlands and pollution of air, water and soil by hazardous substances to nuclear fallout and radiation.
Damages resulting from military actions affects ecosystem and natural resources not only beyond the limits of national territories. It can also extend beyond present generation.
Comparing to other areas of environmental protection there exist few international documents regulating protection of environment in conflict-affected areas. Moreover their scope of application remains insufficient while implementation and enforcement, even of these few existing legal instruments, remains quite weak on the national level.
Recognizing the crucial role of UNEP in post-crisis environmental assessment, risk reduction and recovery Ukraine wishes to initiate a UNEA resolution, in the first place, to raise awareness of the governments about the risks and challenges to the ecology inflicted by armed conflicts, to reinforce implementation of existing international instruments by appealing to countries to reflect the relevant provisions in national legislations and to call on the international community to cooperate closely on preventing and reducing the consequences.
I believe that UNEA-2, taking into account its high mandate and its mission to address the wide scope of environmental issues of sustainable development agenda, comprises the very platform for adopting such resolution.
In this regard I invite all the interested parties to support Ukraine’s initiative and to consider possibility to co-sponsor the resolution. Elaboration of the draft resolution will begin next week and we would appreciate valuable comments to its text from our partners and colleagues.
We hope that the resolution will reach a consensus among all delegations and will constitute an environment oriented document rather than a politically motivated one.
I thank you, Madame Chair.