A revelation from former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, who discovered that Ukraine would not be a sovereign state given that it had never registered its borders with Russia. They are trying to convey the idea that Ukraine is still part of Russia and that for this reason Moscow could enter Ukraine whenever it wants. This is what we read in numerous posts on Facebook which share the same text. However, Ukraine registered its borders with Russia in 2003.

For those in a hurry:

  • Ukraine registered its borders with Russia in 2003.
  • Both countries signed and ratified the agreement.
  • Ukraine is by definition a nation and has been part of the UN since 1945 (it changed its name in 1991).
  • Borders are not registered with the United Nations.

Analyzes

Let's see a screenshot of one of the messages being checked (here, here and here for other examples). The description reads:

Posted by Twitter user: sabrina F. A LITTLE DETAIL. Former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon made a stunning statement, the knowledge of which is banned in the Ukrainian press and on the Internet. And so we don't know anything about it. During the meeting of the United Nations Security Council, the conflict between the two states was addressed. From here the following conclusion was drawn: Ukraine has not registered its borders since 12/25/1991. The registration of Ukraine's borders as a sovereign state did not take place within the United Nations. So it can be assumed that Russia does not even commit any violations against Ukraine. According to the CIS Treaty, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the territory of Ukraine is an administrative district of the USSR. Therefore, no one can be blamed for separatism and the forced change of Ukrainian borders. But not all countries registered on the borders are members of the CIS: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan (has not ratified; associated country), Ukraine (n has not ratified; in fact participates). According to international law, Ukraine simply does not have officially recognized borders. To resolve this problem, Ukraine must complete border demarcation with neighboring countries and obtain agreement from neighboring countries, including Russia, on their common border. Everything must be documented and agreements signed with all neighboring countries. The European Union is determined to support Ukraine on this important issue and has decided to provide all necessary technical assistance. But will Russia sign a border treaty with Ukraine? No of course not! Since Russia is the legal successor of the USSR (this is confirmed by the decisions of international courts on property disputes between the former USSR and foreign countries). Ukraine is not a nation. Not from today. Still… Its so-called borders will NEVER be recognized by the Russian Federation, because Ukraine is ALREADY part of the Russian Federation. Thank you Valeria Gentili

The text, translated into English, was circulating well before Russia's invasion of Ukraine. In fact, here you can see a sharing from February 22, 2022, two days before the full-scale invasion began. The greatest number of shares were concentrated around the date of the invasion, but many users continue to spread fake news. Unlike many other similar hoaxes, specific dates and people are cited here, giving a sense of the authority of the purported news. The date of December 25, 1991 is not that of Ukraine's independence from Russia, obtained on August 24, 1991, but that of the recognition of the nascent Ukrainian state by the United States. .

Ukraine registered its borders with Russia

However, it is not true that Ukraine has never registered its borders with Russia. The agreement between the two countries was signed on January 28, 2003 – as can be seen on the website of the Ukrainian Parliament – ​​and ratified in April 2004 by the two countries, as recalled in the agreement on cooperation at sea from Ukraine. Azov and the Kerch Strait, signed on December 24, 2003 and ratified by Russia and Ukraine in 2004. There is no evidence of alleged intervention by former UN Secretary Ban Ki-Moon regarding the failure to register the borders between Russia and Ukraine.

Ukraine is a sovereign nation and a member state of the UN

There is therefore no basis for asserting that Ukraine is not a nation. A nation is defined by the Treccani Encyclopedia as “the group of people who have a common origin, language, history and who are conscious of this unity, even independently of its realization in political unity.” Ukraine is not only all of these, but also a sovereign state, a member of the UN since 1945 (it changed its name from the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic to Ukraine in 1991).

Borders are not registered with the UN

Contacted by colleagues from AFP, Mira Kaneva (Department of International Law at Sofia University) explained that “Recognition of borders occurs through the signing of an appropriate treaty establishing the will to do so. Recognition takes effect after ratification of the treaty, and not with the registration of this treaty in the United Nations – which registers international treaties”. Still on AFP, Dimitar Gochev (Department of International Law at Sofia University) explains that “borders are not registered with the United Nations. Treaties are registered under Article 102 of the United Nations Charter. However, failure to register is not a cause of nullity: an “unregistered” treaty has full force of law.

Conclusions

It is claimed that Ukraine never registered its borders with Russia and is therefore not a nation. Ukraine registered its borders with Russia in 2003. Both countries signed and ratified the agreement. Ukraine is by definition a nation. And it has been part of the UN since 1945.

This article contributes to a Facebook Project to combat fake news and misinformation on its social platforms. Laws here for more information about our partnership with Facebook.

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