India abstains on UNSC resolution that 'deplores' Russian aggression against Ukraine : The Tribune India

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India abstains on UNSC resolution that 'deplores' Russian aggression against Ukraine

The resolution did not pass as Russia, a Permanent Member of UNSC, vetoed the resolution which received 11 votes in favour and three abstentions by India, China and the UAE



Tribune News Service

Sandeep Dikshit
New Delhi, February 26

India joined China in abstaining on a US-sponsored UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution on Friday night that sought to strongly condemn Russia's aggression against Ukraine.

Video grab

Also read: ‘India retained option of reaching out to all sides by abstaining from UN vote on Ukraine’

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The resolution did not pass as Russia, a Permanent Member of UNSC, vetoed the resolution which received 11 votes in favour and three abstentions by India, China and the UAE.

``By abstaining, India retained the option of reaching out to relevant sides in an effort to bridge the gap and find the middle ground with an aim to foster dialogue and diplomacy,’’ said India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador T S Tirumurti in India's `Explanation of Vote’.

Also read: Don't move to border posts without coordination with us: Indian embassy in Ukraine

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"India is deeply disturbed by the recent turn of developments in Ukraine. We urge that all efforts are made for the immediate cessation of violence and hostilities,’’ he added. ``Welfare and security of Indian community, in particular stranded students and their evacuation from Ukraine is the immediate priority,’’ underlined the Indian diplomat.

The veto may not end matters at the UN as about 50 countries led by the US in a joint statement condemned Russia’s ``abuse of power’’ and declared that `` We will be taking this matter to the General Assembly, where the Russian veto does not apply and the nations of the world will continue to hold Russia accountable.’’

``Russia has abused its power today to veto our strong resolution. But Russia cannot veto our voices. Russia cannot veto the Ukrainian people. Russia cannot veto their own people protesting this war in the streets. Russia cannot veto the UN Charter. Russia cannot, and will not, veto accountability,’’ said the joint statement.

India also said, ``dialogue is the only answer to settling differences and disputes, however daunting that may appear at this moment. It is a matter of regret that the path of diplomacy was given up. We must return to it. For all these reasons, India has chosen to abstain on this resolution.’’

The UNSC draft resolution was piloted by the US and Albania and co-sponsored by several other nations. The resolution sought to ``deplore in the strongest terms Russia's aggression against Ukraine’’ and wanted Russia to ``immediately cease its use of force against Ukraine and shall refrain from any further unlawful threat or use of force against any UN member state.’’

The resolution wanted Moscow to ``immediately and unconditionally reverse the decision related to the status of certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine.’’ India has so far resisted US overtures for a collective response to condemn Russia's invasion.

New Delhi was courted by both sides ahead of the vote. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov spoke to Indian leaders and in a statement, the Russian Charge d’ Affaires Roman Babushkin had hoped that India would stand by Russia at the UNSC. Separately, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wanted ``India to use all influence in its relations with Russia to force it to cease military aggression against Ukraine; and support the UNSC draft resolution.

 

The US had anticipated the Russia veto and had said a day earlier that in doing so, Russia would underscore its ``isolation’’. An earlier draft of the resolution had proposed moving the resolution under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, which provides for armed action by the Security Council. However, this was dropped in the final version that was put to vote.

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