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Statement by Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock in her capacity as Chair of today’s virtual G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine

1. Today, in their 12th meeting this year, 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, again condemned in the strongest possible terms Russia’s illegal, unjustifiable, and unprovoked war of aggression against Ukraine and expressed their full solidarity and unwavering support for Ukraine and its people for as long as it takes. They underscored their steadfast commitment to Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, within its internationally recognised borders.

2. Recalling previous G7 Foreign Ministers’ statements, they reiterated their strong condemnation of Russia’s illegal attempted annexation of sovereign Ukrainian territory, which will never be recognized; atrocities committed by Russian armed forces, including those involving the killing of civilians, torture, reported executions, sexual violence, and deportations, including of children, to Russia. G7 members underlined there can be no impunity for war crimes and other atrocities. They will hold President Putin and those responsible to account in accordance with international law. G7 members reiterated that Russia’s weaponization of energy and food especially impacts the world’s most vulnerable and that Russia’s spreading of disinformation and false accusations, Russia’s irresponsible nuclear rhetoric and Russia’s seizure and militarization of Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) are unacceptable. G7 members again underlined their full support for the work of the International Atomic Energy Agency to establish a nuclear safety and security zone at the ZNPP.

3. G7 members continue to call on Belarusian authorities to stop enabling the Russian war of aggression by permitting Russian armed forces to use Belarusian territory and by providing support to the Russian military. Any further active participation in the Russian illegal war of aggression would run counter to the will and aspirations of the Belarusian people. If the Belarusian authorities more directly involve Belarus in Russia’s war, the G7 will impose overwhelming additional costs on the regime.

4. Russia’s massive and deliberate attacks on Ukraine’s critical infrastructure, in particular energy, heating and water facilities, using missiles and Iranian drones, have left millions of Ukrainians in the dark and cold of winter. Through these barbaric attacks, Russia is trying to terrorize the civilian population. G7 members recalled that indiscriminate attacks, as well as attacks on the civilian population or civilian objects constitute a war crime. They underscored increased efforts to assist the Ukrainian people throughout this winter, including following the international conference held in Paris on 13 December, which furthered G7+ efforts to respond to the humanitarian emergency. Resolved to support Ukraine’s repair, recovery and reconstruction, G7 members recalled the importance of coordinating on further international support, including in the fields of critical infrastructure and of Ukraine’s recovery, and welcomed the recent agreement by G7 Leaders to establish a multi-agency Donor Coordination Platform.

5. G7 members committed to enhance and closely coordinate efforts to meet Ukraine’s urgent requirements for military and defense equipment, especially air defense. They underlined this is essential to save lives and prevent additional civilian suffering.

6. The G7 members also reiterated their full resolve to continue coordinating financial, material, humanitarian, defense, political, technical and legal assistance to support Ukraine’s defense of its sovereignty and territorial integrity. They remained committed to the unprecedented coordinated sanctions measures in response to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. G7 members will maintain and intensify economic pressure on Russia and those who evade and undermine the restrictive measures. They encouraged third countries to join G7 efforts, including the coordinated action to reduce Russian revenues from the export of oil by leveraging the maximum price per barrel for seaborne Russian-origin crude oil set by the Price Cap Coalition. They reiterated their commitment to shielding vulnerable countries that are severely impacted by the repercussions of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine and Russia’s weaponization of energy and food.

7. G7 members commended the bravery of the Ukrainian people in their fight for their country. The G7 firmly supported efforts to secure Ukraine’s immediate financial stability and support its recovery and reconstruction towards a sustainable, prosperous future, and encouraged Ukraine’s reform agenda. They remained committed to fully supporting Ukraine in securing its free and democratic future in line with its European path. They highlighted shared values of freedom and democracy, and are committed to upholding the rules-based multilateral order and international cooperation.

8. G7 members welcomed and supported President Zelenskyy’s efforts to promote a just and lasting peace. Russia can end this war immediately by ceasing its attacks against Ukraine and completely and unconditionally withdrawing its forces and equipment from the entire territory of Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders. G7 members again called on Russia to do so immediately.

 

Afghanistan

9. The G7 members strongly condemned the Taliban’s recent decision to ban women from universities, to continue to bar girls from secondary schools, and to impose other harsh restrictions on the ability of women and girls in Afghanistan to exercise their human rights and fundamental freedoms. They urged the Taliban to abandon the ban on university education for women and to reverse without delay the existing decision to prohibit girls’ access to secondary school. The recent measures by the Taliban, in conjunction with previous cumulative measures restricting the exercise of human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls in Afghanistan, are extremely concerning and seem to be a systematic policy. Gender persecution may amount to a crime against humanity under the Rome Statute, to which Afghanistan is a State Party. The G7 members stand with all Afghans in their demand to exercise their human rights consistent with Afghanistan’s obligations under international law. Taliban policies designed to erase women from public life will have consequences for how our countries engage with the Taliban.

 

Handover of the G7 Presidency to Japan

10. Under the German Presidency in 2022, G7 members, together with their international partners, have demonstrated unity and resolve in supporting Ukraine, building on their shared values and commitment to the rules-based international order, with the UN Charter at its core. G7 members will continue to work with others to mitigate the global consequences of the war that Russia has unleashed on Ukraine, harming Ukraine and the world’s most vulnerable. The G7 stands ready to continue and further strengthen this commitment under the upcoming Japanese G7 Presidency in 2023.

 

 

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