The Team has long tried to ignore “sensational reports” in which numerous ‘experts’ are now targeting Ukraine’s boundaries by announcing them inexistent. Such allegations are so absurd that we thought they would be disregarded by every man with a sound judgement. Yet they continue to spread in the blogosphere, various marginal websites, and even bigger media resources (though the latter try to ironize over such messages).

This message firstly appeared on the website of the political organization Ukrainian Choice chaired by Viktor Medvedchuk who served as head of President Leonid Kuchma’s presidential administration. In addition, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin is known to be the godfather of Medvedchuk’s daughter. The message was published by Iryna Hyzhnyak, Medvedchuk’s representative in the city of Kharkov.


As reported by Mrs. Hyzhnyak, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon declared on the English Thames Television that the United Nations Security Council has reviewed “the Ukrainian question” again and “the experts have handed down the following opinion based on the international law in place: as it has turned out, Ukraine as a state has not carried out demarcation of its boundaries since the collapse of the USSR; nor has it registered demarcation of its boundaries with the United Nations. The boundaries therefore remain an administrative district of the USSR according to the ordinary treaty within CIS that is valid in the UN.

According to Mrs. Hyzhnyak, there are no grounds to talk about separatism in the Eastern Ukraine, as Ukraine has no actual state boundaries.

First of all, no such statement was made by Ban Ki-moon. Thames Television is a production company that releases programmes and shows like The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent. The company’s website has no reference to Ban Ki-moon or Ukraine’s boundaries whatsoever.

Next, the United Nations Security Council has not held any meetings on Ukraine since a while ago. The last such meeting took place on March 19 when the statement of Ukrainian Ambassador to the UN dated February 28 was reviewed.


In addition, there no such term as “UN registration of state boundaries”. Ukraine is a state officially recognized within the existing de jure boundaries. By the way, most of the countries of the world continue to recognize Crimea as part of Ukraine – out of 193 UN member-states only 11 (including Syria, Nicaragua, Zimbabwe, and Russian Federation itself) have recognized annexation of Crimea by Russia.

Finally, back in 2003 Ukraine and Russia mutually recognized their land boundaries at the presidential level, while in 2004 this treaty was ratified by the national parliaments. The only remaining delimited boundary section between Ukraine and Russia is the Kerch Strait, i.e. the sea border.

The idea of ‘demarcation’ mentioned by the authors of the ‘sensation’ refers to the physical marking of the boundaries, i.e. putting poles into the ground. This is only done to reflect de jure boundaries on a physical territory, and as such does not have any legal implications.

On a side note, it needs to be mentioned that border is a bilateral notion. This means that if Ukraine did not demarcate its boundaries with Russia, Russia did not do so either.