Feb 23, 2022 - World

Ukraine's ambassador to UN: "There is no purgatory for war criminals"

Ukraine's ambassador to the United Nations confronted Russia's representative during an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council on Wednesday, telling him as Russia's invasion began: "There is no purgatory for war criminals. They go straight to hell, ambassador."

Why it matters: Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a "special military operation" in Ukraine at the very moment that members of the Security Council — which is chaired by Russia this month — were calling on Moscow to de-escalate. Moments later, explosions were reported in cities across Ukraine.

What they're saying: "Relinquish your duties as the chair. Call Putin, call [foreign minister Sergei] Lavrov to stop aggression," Ukraine's ambassador, Sergiy Kyslytsya, demanded of his Russian counterpart.

  • "And I welcome the decision of some members of this council to meet as soon as possible to consider the necessary decision, that would condemn the aggression that you have launched on my people."
  • In response, Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya claimed that Russia was not being aggressive against the people of Ukraine, but the "junta" in power in Kyiv. The meeting then concluded.

Go deeper: Latest updates from Russia's attack on Ukraine

Go deeper