Ban Ki-moon to Moscow and Kiev

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Russia veto

19 March 2014. Ban Ki-moon, the UN Secretary-General will visit Moscow and Kiev in the coming days to mediate in the Crimea crisis.

The UN Secretary-General is departing New York this afternoon for a visit as part of his diplomatic efforts to encourage all parties to resolve the current crisis peacefully.

The Secretary-General has consistently called for a solution that is guided by the principles of the United Nations Charter. His first stop will be Moscow, where tomorrow, 20 March, he will meet with President Vladimir Putin, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and other senior officials.

The Secretary-General will travel on Friday, 21 March, to Kiev, where he will hold talks with Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk and other officials. While in the Ukrainian capital, he will also meet with members of the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission and representatives of civil society.

On 15 March Russia vetoed a draft resolution in the Security Council which declared the planned referendum on independence for Ukraine's Crimea region illegal and urged countries not to recognise the results. The resolution, drafted by the United States delegation, came after months of growing unrest in the region and weeks of UN officials appealing to all parties to de-escalate tensions and engage in direct and constructive dialogue to forge a peaceful way forward. The resolution received 13 votes in favour, one against and one abstention from China.


Photo: A view of the Security Council as Vitaly I. Churkin, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, vetoes a draft resolution on Crimea 15 March. UN/Eskender Debebe.