Kuleba to boycott OSCE meeting due to Lavrov's presence

Kuleba to boycott OSCE meeting due to Lavrov's presence

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba will boycott the OSCE ministerial meeting due to the presence of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Oleg Nikolenko announced this on Facebook, Ukrinform reports.

"The Ukrainian delegation will not take part in the OSCE ministerial meeting at the level of the foreign minister," he said.

Nikolenko recalled that a meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council would be held in Skopje from November 30 to December 1.

Nikolenko said that Ukraine highly appreciates the efforts of North Macedonia as the presiding state in 2023 and Minister of Foreign Affairs Bujar Osmani personally. He also thanked North Macedonia for prioritizing the issue of countering Russian aggression against Ukraine during his presidency.

At the same time, he stated that the Russian Federation is consistently destroying the OSCE, abusing the rule of consensus. Resorting to blackmail and open threats, the Russian Federation systematically blocked consensus on key issues. The blocking of Estonia's candidacy for the chairmanship of the OSCE in 2024 also became arbitrary. In addition, Russia illegally detained three Ukrainians - representatives of the OSCE, who have been in prison for more than 500 days.

"Russia has created an existential crisis in the OSCE and turned the organization into a hostage of its whims and aggression. Under such conditions, the presence of the Russian delegation at the ministerial meeting at the minister's level for the first time after the start of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine will only intensify the crisis into which Russia has driven the OSCE," Nikolenko said.

He stressed the need to work together to "save the OSCE from Russia, rather than to send signals about the possibility of returning to the forms of cooperation that existed before February 2022," since Russia unleashed its largest armed aggression in Europe since the end of the Second World War and grossly violated all the principles of the Helsinki Final Act.

"In view of this, the Ukrainian delegation will not participate in the OSCE ministerial meeting at the level of the minister of foreign affairs. At the same time, Ukraine remains committed to the principles of the OSCE and is ready to continue working with partners in order to restore respect for the Helsinki Final Act, in particular on the basis of the implementation of the Peace Formula of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky," he said.

Ukrinform learned that the Ukrainian delegation at the OSCE Ministerial Council in Skopje would be headed by Ukraine's permanent representative to the international organizations in Vienna.

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