On September 8, a session was held in the UN Security Council on the topic of arms delivery to Ukraine by the West.
In the introductory part of the session, Dragana Trifković, director of the Center for Geostrategic Studies, spoke about the weapons that were delivered to the battlefield during the war in Yugoslavia, comparing it to the current situation in Ukraine. Below you can read the entire speech of Dragana Trifković.
ladies and gentlemen, distinguished members of the Security Council,
At the beginning, I want to express my special respect for this high body of the World Organization and to thank you for the opportunity to speak, which at the same time I consider a great responsibility for every word spoken.
When we talk about the war in Ukraine, it is very important to look at it consistently and to take into account the arguments of both warring parties. Of great concern is the fact that one can often hear only accusations that are not supported by arguments, much less evidence.
The view of the war of someone who is from Serbia and who has survived and learned about the special methods of warfare, may differ from many others who do not have that experience. That is why, from the beginning, I considered the war in Ukraine to be a hybrid war and compared it to the one that was waged on the territory of the former Yugoslavia in the nineties of the last century, in terms of the external influence of the preparation of the war to the direct and indirect participation in the war through the training and arming, bringing in volunteers, and commanding of the army.
I will mention a few of the most important examples:
The first is the case of the Croatian general Špegelj, a member of the Yugoslav People's Army, who smuggled weapons into Croatia through Hungary, Austria and Italy, armed paramilitary formations and prepared them for attacks on members of the regular army, even before the start of the war in Yugoslavia. In October 1990, the counter-intelligence service recorded Spegelj conversation, from which it became clear that he received help from the US for these operations. The leadership of Croatia, in agreement with Slovenia, illegally imported large quantities of weapons from former Warsaw Pact countries such as Hungary and Romania and thus armed a hundred thousand members of paramilitary formations.
Another example is the arming of Muslims in Bosnia and Herzegovina (from 1992 to 1995) by Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Turkey, Iran and others, which was carried out through Croatia, but with the knowledge and approval of the American administration headed by George Bush, later Bill Clinton. Bosnian Muslims were also armed during the embargo. The biggest concession to Muslims is UN Protection Force's permission to arm Croatian and Muslim units under the conditions of an embargo on the import of weapons, and all kinds of control was their basic task. There is evidence that even weapons from the American Ramstein base in Germany were delivered to Muslim forces in Bosnia. American Admiral Leighton Smith and French General Bertrand de Laprel in 1994. agreed that arming Serbia's neighbors was a big obligation.
The third example is the arming of Albanians by causing a rebellion in 1997, in which weapons were taken from military warehouses in Albania, then transferred to the territory of Kosovo and Metohija and handed over to members of the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army. It should be noted that Albanian separatists from Kosovo, without any consequences, formed the official Kosovo Army in 2018, contrary to UN Security Council Resolution 1244, and that regardless of the violation of international law, countries such as the USA, Great Britain, Turkey and others are training and arming this illegal army.
Today in Ukraine we can also see examples of both direct interference in the conflict, where Western countries send weapons to the Ukrainian side, and the use of third countries to supply weapons to Ukraine. Recently, a Ukrainian plane that took off from Nis and was loaded with weapons crashed in Greece. Today, weapons also reach Ukraine via Asian and African countries.
These weapons in Ukraine are killing the civilian population without choosing whether they speak Ukrainian or Russian. The Center for Geostrategic Studies, which I lead, recently sent a letter to the UN Human Rights Committee, the Council of Europe, the Red Cross and other institutions. The content of the letter states the following facts:
"It is evident that the Ukrainian army often uses prohibited cluster weapons, which it targets the civilian population in the east of Ukraine. An inspection of the situation on the ground revealed that in the period from April to July of this year, the Ukrainian army repeatedly targeted Izjum with cluster bombs, which led to the death of a large number of civilians.
In the Donetsk region on July 20, several missile attacks by the US High Mobility Artillery Rocket System system were carried out by the Ukrainian army on the places of Elenovka and Aleksandrovka. Attacks were carried out on civilian objects and infrastructure. Then, on the night of July 29, there was another attack by the Ukrainian army on the detention center in Elenovka, where prisoners of war from the Azov battalion were also held. As a result, 51 people died and 75 were injured.
Then, on July 30, the Ukrainian army targeted the center of the densely populated city of Donetsk, which had previously been demined and completely cleaned. On that occasion, the Ukrainian forces used Uragan missiles of NATO production, which, in addition to the standard destructive effect, are equipped with cluster munitions. Each of the rockets contained a large quantity of banned PMF-1 Lepestok anti-personnel mines. It completely paralyzed the city and the supply of food and water to the inhabitants for several days".
From all of the above, it can be concluded that the Ukrainian side perceives civilians, as well as prisoners of war, as legitimate targets and that it acts in order to achieve as many victims as possible among them, which is against all the rules of war and international humanitarian law.
In addition, the weapons that Western countries deliver to Ukraine, in a large number of cases (20-30%) through corrupt members of the SBU end up in third countries, often in the hands of terrorists. This fact increases the danger of further destabilization of many regions. There are well-founded suspicions that some of the weapons from Ukraine have already been transferred to Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo and Metohija, areas that, years after the end of the war in Yugoslavia, represent a potential danger for the outbreak of renewed conflicts. There are indications of renewed preparations for unrest in Kosovo and Metohija through extremist structures, in order to increase the presence of NATO forces in this territory.
The situation today is more than dangerous and the hybrid war threatens to turn into a direct conflict on a large scale, which in the conditions of modern weapons calls into question the survival and future of our civilization. The UN Security Council has a great responsibility to prevent conflicts and facilitate the establishment of peace and security.
The first step is to stop the supply of weapons to Ukraine by Western countries and to close the black arms market. It is necessary to discuss the legal responsibility assumed by parties that sell weapons to nations involved in active conflict.
Thank you for your attention.
September 8, 2022