On March 14, the UN Security Council convened an emergency meeting in New York to discuss the chemical incident which took place in Salisbury, Great Britain, the so-called Sergey Skripal case. It was the Russian Federation that had asked for the format of the meeting to be changed to an open briefing. The Russian representative provided a tough and well-argued response to the groundless accusations against Russia, as well as London’s insinuations and ultimatums with US Permanent Representative Nikki Haley joining this chorus without delving into any details.
At the same time, the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN Vassily Nebenzya highlighted Russia’s readiness to cooperate with the British investigation under the Chemical Weapons Convention, especially since a citizen of the Russian Federation, Yuliya Skripal, suffered in this incident. The response to this statement consisted of a series of propaganda statements that are only suitable for ill-informed and unassuming members of the public that can be easily impressed.
To confirm the seriousness of Russia’s intentions, the Russian delegation proposed to draft immediately, on the same day, a coordinated and depoliticised statement by the Security Council on the incident reflecting the international legal perspective on the matter. In doing so, we also sought to avoid any interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign state (in this case, Great Britain) and the investigation by its national authorities. It should be said that it is not uncommon for London and other Western countries to engage in practices of this kind.
The draft statement that we prepared reads as follows:
“Reports on the alleged use of a toxic agent in Great Britain is a matter of grave concern for members of the UN Security Council, who call on all interested member states to hold consultations and cooperate on investigating this situation in keeping with their commitments under Par. 2, Article IX of the Chemical Weapons Convention.
Members of the Security Council reiterated their resolute support for the Chemical Weapons Convention and noted the need to create a world free from chemical weapons.”
However, the British delegation suggested amendments that distorted the very gist of the document, which led us to stop the drafting process and in fact thwarted its adoption.
In doing so, London continued its provocative and hysterical actions of the recent days, once again showing that it is not really interested or committed to conducting a full and trust-worthy professional investigation into the Salisbury incident. For us this was no surprise.