Ukraine: India abstains in vote for UNGA emergency session; Calls for a return to the path of diplomacy

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The United Nations: For the second time in as many days, India abstained on a UN Security Council resolution to convene a rare emergency special session of the UN General Assembly on the aggression of Russia against Ukraine, even as New Delhi asserted that there was no choice but to return to the path of diplomacy and dialogue to settle the Ukrainian crisis.

The 15-nation Council met on Sunday afternoon to vote on a procedural resolution to refer the Ukrainian situation to an emergency session of the 193-member United Nations General Assembly.

India, China and the United Arab Emirates abstained while Russia voted against the resolution and 11 Council members – Albania, Brazil, France, Gabon, Ghana, Ireland, Kenya, Mexico, Norway, UK and United States – voted for. This is the second time since Friday that India has abstained in the Council on a resolution on the Ukrainian crisis.

The vote calling for the UNGA session was procedural, so none of the Council’s five permanent members – China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States – were able to exercise their power of veto. The resolution was passed, paving the way for the General Assembly meeting on the deepening crisis on Monday morning.

Sunday’s Council voting record was the same as Friday’s, with India, China and the United Arab Emirates abstaining, Russia using its veto and 11 Council members voting in favour.

The procedural resolution says the Council decided to convene an emergency special session of the General Assembly to consider the Ukraine crisis after taking into account that the “lack of unanimity” of its permanent members at the meeting of Friday prevented him from exercising his primary responsibility. for the maintenance of international peace and security.

In explanation of vote, India’s permanent representative to the UN, Ambassador TS Tirumurti, said it was ‘regrettable’ that the situation in Ukraine had further deteriorated since the Council’s last meeting. on this issue on Friday.

He reiterated India’s call for an immediate cessation of violence and an end to all hostilities, stressing that “there is no choice but to return to the path of diplomacy and dialogue”.

Noting that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has strongly advocated this in his recent conversations with Russian and Ukrainian leaders, Tirumurti said: “We welcome today’s announcement by both sides to hold border talks Belarusian.

During his conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Prime Minister Modi reiterated his call for an immediate cessation of violence and a return to dialogue and expressed India’s readiness to contribute in any way to the peace efforts.

During the phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Modi reiterated his long-standing belief that differences between Russia and the NATO group can only be resolved through honest and sincere dialogue. He called for an immediate cessation of violence and called for concerted efforts by all parties to return to the path of diplomatic negotiations and dialogue.

Tirumurti also said that India continues to be deeply concerned about the safety and security of its nationals, including a large number of Indian students, who are still stranded in Ukraine.

“Our evacuation efforts have been affected by the complex and uncertain situation at the border crossing points. It is important to maintain an uninterrupted and predictable movement of people. This is an urgent humanitarian need that must be addressed immediately,” said said Tirumurti.

“Given all the circumstances, we have decided to abstain,” he said.

“The world order is anchored on international law, the Charter of the United Nations and respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all States. We all agree on these principles,” he said.

While a UNSC resolution would have been legally binding and General Assembly resolutions are not, the vote in the Assembly is symbolic of global opinion on the crisis.

With the adoption of the resolution by the UN Security Council, it is for the first time in 40 years that the Council has decided to convene an emergency special session of the UN General Assembly. It will be only the 11th such emergency session of the General Assembly since 1950.

Following the decision in the Security Council, President of the 76th session of the General Assembly Abdulla Shahid tweeted that he would chair the emergency special session of the General Assembly on Monday morning.

US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the council on Sunday that the Security Council had taken an “important step” towards holding Russia accountable.

“For the first time in decades, he called for an emergency special session of the General Assembly. Council members who supported this resolution recognize that this is no ordinary time. We must take extraordinary measures to deal with this threat to our international system and do all we can to help Ukraine and its people,” she said.

The US envoy said President Putin has put Russian nuclear forces on high alert, even if he invades a country without nuclear weapons and is not threatened by NATO, a defensive alliance that does not will not fight in Ukraine.

Ukraine’s UN envoy Sergiy Kyslytsya said Council members who see no reason to back the call for an emergency UNGA session should know that most Ukrainian cities are now hearing constant warnings of air raids and that they should look at the photos and pictures of what happened next.

Elaborating on other consequences of the violence across Ukraine, he expressed extreme concern over Russia’s “nuclear blackmail”, a threat he said the world must take very seriously.

Russia’s UN envoy and Council President in February Vassily Nebenzia spoke in his national capacity, saying each permanent member has the right to use the veto for specific reasons such as stability world.

He also urged members to stop aiding and abetting the current social media war of disinformation against the Russian Federation.

“We hear lies and deceptions about the indiscriminate bombing of Ukrainian facilities, hospitals and schools” while “the Russian military is not threatening civilians in Ukraine; it does not bomb civilian infrastructure,” Nebenzia said.

At the Security Council meeting, many members called for diplomatic efforts to peacefully resolve the Ukraine crisis and said they would monitor the Ukraine-Russia meeting due to take place on Monday.

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