Russian Ambassador called in over Ukraine

Minister of Foreign Affairs Nanaia Mahuta says the Ambassador of the Russian Federation is  being called in to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade amid escalating actions from Russia.

“The Russian Ambassador is being called in today to hear New Zealand’s strong opposition to the actions taken by Russia in recent days, and condemn what looks to be the beginning of a Russian invasion into Ukraine territory,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

“We repeat our call for Russia to act consistently with its international obligations, and return to diplomatic negotiations as a pathway to resolve this conflict.

“We have consistently expressed our strong support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, and international diplomatic efforts to de-escalate the crisis to find a peaceful solution.

“A military invasion is an act of aggression, and a violation of one of the most basic tenets of international law. New Zealand is ready to take further measures,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

In the event of a full invasion of Ukraine, the New Zealand Government is prepared to respond with a suite of measures in line with those of our partners, and which will send a clear message of unity against an act of Russian aggression. These measures span the range of options available to New Zealand, including travel bans, controlled export bans and diplomatic measures.

“Russia’s actions could have far-reaching and serious humanitarian, security and economic implications for the region, and globally,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

“We are very clear: any act of Russian aggression in Ukraine poses a direct threat to global peace and security, and would represent a further violation of international law,” Nanaia Mahuta said.