Foreign,Commonwealth and Development Office
Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure in Ukraine: UK statement to the OSCE
Emma Logan (UK delegation to the OSCE) speaks about the impacts on civilians when critical infrastructure is damaged, including by Russia's war in Ukraine.
Thank you, Madam Chair, again for convening us today and bringing together panel experts for such a timely discussion that has highlighted the impacts on civilians when critical services are damaged, as well as the role of States in protecting these services in armed conflict.
As has been noted several times today but cannot be overstated, a little over a year ago, Russia joined with others at the UN Security Council to unanimously adopt Resolution 2573. Yet, in a flagrant breach of International Humanitarian Law, Russian bombers have, in recent weeks, repeatedly and remorselessly dropped targeted munitions on civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, including government buildings, hospitals, schools, and transportation.
Today we have heard the numbers of verified attacks on Ukraine’s health facilities. Stretched healthcare facilities in the East are having to respond to growing reports of gender-based violence, including Conflict-Related Sexual Violence. Earlier today, Prime Minister Johnson addressed Ukraine’s Parliament, setting out a new package of military aid to enable Ukraine to defend itself as well as specialised civilian protection vehicles, and we will continue to provide humanitarian aid including generators to support vital services to keep running.
The dangers of this war transcend borders. As described by our keynote speaker, the world has witnessed concerning attacks on Ukrainian nuclear facilities, demonstrating Russia’s reckless attitude to nuclear safety and security. The UK will continue to support neighbouring countries, including those which are hosting refugees. We continue to provide regional support in the cyber space, including by sharing threat information. For instance, we have recently launched our new programme supporting Georgia to implement its new National Security Strategy, focusing on incident management, information sharing, and the cyber awareness of vulnerable groups.
At times of heightened international tension all critical service providers must be vigilant to the risk of cyber compromises. Earlier this month, the UK joined our international partners to share updated mitigation advice against state-sponsored and criminal cyber threats. Strengthening the relationships between government departments, regulators, and private sector operators is key to ensuring the latest threats, risks and vulnerabilities are understood and mitigated effectively.
States should, where possible, make publicly available their approaches to cyber security and resilience, including how they relate to critical infrastructure protection. The UK routinely publishes this information including guides on how to effectively detect, respond to and resolve cyber incidents, and crucially where organisations can find support from certified Cyber Incident Response companies assessed against clear published standards. Sharing best practice in approaches to critical infrastructure dependences and cooperating across borders are crucial elements of strengthening our international resilience.
Madam chair, we have entered a new world where service protection and resilience measures must not only be prepared to stand up to threats caused by non-state terrorist acts, but direct and targeted missile attack. As we enter the third month of President Putin’s illegal and unprovoked war, not only do thousands of civilians remain in Mariupol, Kherson, Donetsk, Luhansk, and other cities, struggling to survive without food, water, warmth, and medical supplies, but the effects continue to mount around the world. The OSCE has a role to play to prevent knock-on crises in crime, trafficking, and terrorism, and the UK stands ready to support the Security Committee to that end.
Latest News from
Foreign,Commonwealth and Development Office
Joint statement between the UK and Egypt following the Association Council06/07/2022 09:10:00
The Foreign Secretary met with her Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry yesterday for the inaugural meeting of the UK-Egypt Association Council.
Iran should take this opportunity to conclude the deal while it is still possible: E3 at Security Council30/06/2022 16:25:00
Joint statement by UK, France and Germany ahead of the Security Council meeting on the implementation of resolution 2231
Russia's government has miscalculated in Ukraine: UK statement to the OSCE23/06/2022 16:05:00
Ambassador Neil Bush reiterates the UK's long-standing support to Ukraine in the face of the Russian government's brutal war.
Foreign Secretary's press conference statement in Turkey, June 202223/06/2022 15:05:00
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss gave a press conference statement in Ankara on the UK and Turkey's longstanding alliance, work as NATO partners and the war in Ukraine.
Alok Sharma joins the South African Government for a ministerial roundtable22/06/2022 15:15:00
COP President reinforced international commitment to supporting South Africa’s just energy transition and announced new £1.5 million in UK technical assistance.
New UK Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa and Red Sea appointed21/06/2022 12:20:00
Sarah Montgomery OBE has been appointed UK Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa and Red Sea.
British nationals released from Afghanistan21/06/2022 10:15:00
UK welcomes the release of 5 British men detained in Afghanistan.
Britons urged to get travel smart before they go abroad21/06/2022 09:15:00
The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office has started a new campaign urging Britons to Get Travel Smart before travelling abroad this summer.