New York

23 February 2022

Secretary-General's remarks at Security Council meeting on Ukraine [as delivered] 

Thank you very much, Mr. President. 

Mr. President, Excellencies. 

I want to reaffirm what I expressed this morning in the meeting in the General Assembly, but of course it would not make any sense to bother you reading again the same text that I am sure you are all aware of. 

In between, during the day, a number of events took place, and with your permission, Mr. President, I would like to ask Ms. Rosemary DiCarlo to be able to brief you on those events. 

But simultaneously, today was full of rumours and indications that an offensive against Ukraine was imminent. In the recent past, there were several situations with similar indications, similar rumours. And I never believed in them, convinced that nothing serious would happen.  I was wrong.  And I would like not to be wrong again today. 

So, if indeed an operation is being prepared, I have only one thing to say from the bottom of my heart: President Putin, stop your troops from attacking Ukraine. Give peace a chance. Too many people have already died.