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Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Crimea ARE Ukraine
01 October 2022 16:07

Statement by the Members of the European Council


We firmly reject and unequivocally condemn the illegal annexation by Russia of Ukraine's Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions. By wilfully undermining the rules-based international order and blatantly violating the fundamental rights of Ukraine to independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, core principles as enshrined in the UN Charter and international law, Russia is putting global security at risk.

We do not and will never recognise the illegal 'referenda' that Russia has engineered as a pretext for this further violation of Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, nor their falsified and illegal results. We will never recognise this illegal annexation. These decisions are null and void and cannot produce any legal effect whatsoever. Crimea, Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk are Ukraine. We call on all States and international organisations to unequivocally reject this illegal annexation.

In the face of Russia's war of aggression as well as Moscow's latest escalation, the European Union stands resolutely with Ukraine and its people. We are unwavering in our support to Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty. Ukraine is exercising its legitimate right to defend itself against the Russian aggression to regain full control of its territory and has the right to liberate occupied territories within its internationally recognised borders. The nuclear threats made by the Kremlin, the military mobilisation and the strategy of seeking to falsely present Ukraine's territory as Russia's and purporting that the war may now be taking place on Russia's territory will not shake our resolve.

We will strengthen our restrictive measures countering Russia's illegal actions. They will further increase pressure on Russia to end its war of aggression.

We reiterate that the European Union firmly stands with Ukraine and will continue to provide strong economic, military, social and financial support to Ukraine for as long as it takes.

Press point with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg


President Putin has now claimed four more regions of Ukraine as part of Russia.

This is the largest attempted annexation of European territory by force since the Second World War.

Another 15 percent of Ukraine’s territory.
An area roughly the size of Portugal.
Illegally seized by Russia at gunpoint.

The sham referendums were engineered in Moscow.
And imposed on Ukraine.
In total violation of international law.

This land grab is illegal and illegitimate.
NATO Allies do not, and will not, recognise any of this territory as part of Russia.
We call on all states to reject Russia’s blatant attempts at territorial conquest.

These lands are Ukraine.
Donetsk is Ukraine.
Luhansk is Ukraine.
Kherson is Ukraine.
Zaporizhzhia is Ukraine.
Just like Crimea is Ukraine.

This is the second time Russia has taken Ukrainian territory by force.
But it does not change the nature of the conflict.

This remains Russia’s brutal war of aggression against Ukraine.

And it does not change our commitment to support Ukraine.

NATO is not party to the conflict.
But we provide support to Ukraine so it can uphold its right for  self-defence, enshrined in the UN Charter.

Ours is a defensive Alliance.
We stand united and determined
to defend and protect every NATO Ally.
And every inch of Allied territory.

This is a pivotal moment.
Putin has mobilised hundreds of thousands of more troops.
Engaged in irresponsible nuclear sabre-rattling.
And now illegally annexed more Ukrainian territory.

Together, this represents the most serious escalation since the start of the war. 

None of this shows strength.
It shows weakness.
It is an admission that the war is not going to plan.
And that Putin has utterly failed in his strategic objectives.

Putin bears full responsibility for this war.
And it is his responsibility to end it.
To end the immense suffering of the brave Ukrainian people.
To end the energy and food crisis that is affecting so many around the world.

If Russia stops fighting, there will be peace.
If Ukraine stops fighting, it will cease to exist as an independent sovereign nation in Europe.

NATO reaffirms our unwavering support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

We remain resolute in providing support to Ukraine as it continues to defend itself against Russia’s aggression.

For as long as it takes.

G7 Foreign Ministers’ Statement


We, the G7 Foreign Ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the High Representative of the European Union, are united in our condemnation in the strongest possible terms of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine and its continued violations of Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence.

President Putin’s efforts to incorporate Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhya regions into the territory of the Russian Federation constitute a new low point in Russia’s blatant flouting of international law, and yet another example of Russia’s unacceptable violations of Ukraine’s sovereignty, the UN Charter, and the commonly agreed principles and commitments of the Helsinki Final Act and the Paris Charter.

We will never recognise these purported annexations, nor the sham “referenda” conducted at gunpoint.

We reiterate our call for all countries to condemn unequivocally Russia’s war of aggression and its attempt to acquire territory by force. We call on the broader international community to reject Russia’s brutal expansionism, its efforts to deny Ukraine’s existence as an independent state, and its blatant violation of the international norms that guarantee international peace, security, and the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all states.

We will impose further economic costs on Russia, and on individuals and entities – inside and outside of Russia – that provide political or economic support to these violations of international law. We are unwavering in our support for Ukraine’s right to defend itself against Russia’s war of aggression and its unquestionable right to reclaim its territory from Russia.

We reiterate our condemnation of Russia’s irresponsible nuclear rhetoric. It will not distract or dissuade us from supporting Ukraine, for as long as necessary.

Russia must immediately stop its war of aggression, withdraw all of its troops and military equipment from Ukraine, and respect Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders. We reaffirm that the regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhya as well as Crimea are integral parts of Ukraine.

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