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Press Release

Ukraines Presidency at the UN Security Council

March 1, 2001 #13

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ukraines Permanent Representative to UN Volodymyr Yelchenko, comments on Ukraines upcoming UN security council presidency within March 1-31 period as sure to witness nations active policy and new initiatives.

He stated that Ukraine's upcoming chairmanship at this most important body of the United Nations during the period of March is a "pivotal moment" of Ukraine's presence at the Security Council. He also noted that "there is no higher or more important post in the hierarchy of modern international relations than the UN SC Chairman."

Volodymyr Yelchenko disclosed that over the period of its membership in the UN Security Council Ukraine has increased the amounts of its peacekeeping contingent and become the biggest contributor of peacekeeping operations among European countries. Ukrainian peacekeepers are present now in Kosovo, Bosnia, Afghanistan, South Lebanon, Sierra Leone, East Timor and the Democratic Republic of Congo. He also stated that Ukraine is willing to send its peacekeeping mission to Cyprus and now waiting for an official invitation from the UN Secretariat.

Regarding the policies that Ukraine intends to pursue during its chairmanship at the Security Council, Ukraines Deputy Minister said that his country is using this opportunity "to increase preventive dimensions of the Security Council and the United Nations in general." It involves proposals by the President of Ukraine with regard to increasing the SC's role in prevention of conflicts and establishing UN regional centers for conflict prevention and holding of operations aimed at preventing conflicts. These proposals were made by Leonid Kuchma during a UN SC summit in September last year.

Ukraine will also stand for improving the mechanism of introduction and removal of sanctions. For this purpose a relevant working group has been set up on its initiative. The concrete results of this process, according to Mr. Yelchenko, "will not be seen tomorrow", however it is positive that the organ that is developing new policies regarding sanctions has been established within the framework of the United Nations.

For more information, please contact:

Taras Malyshevskyi, Press secretary of the Embassy of Ukraine
310 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, ON K2P 0J9
tel. (613) 230-2961, fax (613) 230-2400,