As delivered by Ambassador Daniel B. Baer to the Permanent Council
Vienna, February 27, 2014
The United States continues to monitor events in Ukraine – and obviously they are changing, as our Ukrainian colleague knows, hourly – particularly during this critical period of transition. We applaud the efforts of Ukraine’s new leadership towards building a coalition government and laying the ground work for early elections. We of course also followed the confirmation of the appointment of Andriy Deshchytsia as Acting Foreign Minister; obviously he’s well known to the OSCE family and well respected and we look forward to working with him again in his new capacity as well as continuing to work with the delegation here. We continue to stand with the Ukrainian people to help them build the strong, sovereign, and democratic country they deserve and clearly want.
The United States commends Chairman-in-Office Burkhalter’s continued engagement on Ukraine, and notes that he has repeatedly confirmed the OSCE’s readiness to assist Ukraine in securing a peaceful way forward. We applaud the Chairmanship’s offers, and welcome the nomination of Ambassador Tim Guldimann to serve as the Chairmanship’s Personal Envoy to help assess Ukraine’s needs and develop potential measures of support. I take special note here of Ambassador Prokopchuk’s update on various areas in which the new government welcomes the assistance and engagement of the OSCE; we think this is a good step forward and also demonstrates the redoubled commitment of the Ukrainian authorities to OSCE principles.
The United States reaffirms our commitment to the people of Ukraine. We strongly support Ukraine’s unity and territorial integrity – and I take note of Ambassador Prokopchuk’s recalling of the Budapest memorandum – and healthy relations with all of its neighbors, including Russia. We also emphasize the urgent importance of the Rada’s efforts to form a multi-party, technical government – that has been confirmed this afternoon – that represents all regions of Ukraine.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.