India abstains from voting on a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Russia’s ‘aggression’ against Ukraine

The resolution failed to pass when Russia, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, exercised its veto for the month of February. India, China, and the United Arab Emirates were among the 11 countries that voted in favor of the motion, with three abstentions.

“The latest course of events in Ukraine has gravely upset India. In India’s explanation of vote in the Council, Ambassador T S Tirumurti, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, said, “We urge all efforts to be made for the immediate cessation of violence and hostilities.”

India has chosen to abstain from Voting

“However difficult it may look at this time, dialogue is the only way to resolve differences and disputes. It is regrettable that the diplomatic option was abandoned. We must get back to it. “India has chosen to abstain on this resolution for all of these reasons,” Tirumurti added. On Friday, the United Nations Security Council voted on a draught resolution co-sponsored by the United States and Albania, as well as Australia, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Romania, and the United Kingdom.

The resolution failed, as expected, since Russia, a permanent member of the 15-member powerful Security Council, exercised its veto authority. However, Western nations said the resolution aimed to demonstrate Moscow’s isolation in the global arena for its invasion and activities against Ukraine. Given New Delhi’s strong defense connections with Moscow, all eyes were on how India will vote on the resolution.

The resolution reaffirmed the Council’s commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty, independence, unity, and territorial integrity within internationally recognized borders. The resolution “strongly condemns” Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and orders Russia to “immediately halt using force against Ukraine and abstain from any other unlawful threat or use of force against any UN member state.”

The resolution further stated that Russia “must withdraw all of its military forces from Ukraine’s territory within its internationally recognized boundaries immediately, totally, and unconditionally.” Moscow must “immediately and unconditionally rescind the decision related to the status of certain portions of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine,” according to the resolution.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi “appealed for an immediate cease of violence, and asked for coordinated efforts from all sides to return to the road of diplomatic engagement and communication” during a phone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday.

According to the State Department, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar to discuss Russia’s “premeditated, unprovoked, and unlawful attack on Ukraine.”

“A forceful united response to condemn Russia’s invasion and ask for an immediate withdrawal and ceasefire,” Blinken said.

India has refrained from criticizing Russia

India has so far refrained from criticizing Russia’s activities in Ukraine, and Tirumurti expressed “grave worry” about the developments in a message to the UN Security Council on Wednesday night, just as Putin authorized Ukraine’s invasion.

Dmytro Kuleba, Ukraine’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, claimed in a tweet ahead of the UNSC vote that he had called Jaishankar and asked him to “use all leverage in its contacts with Russia to force Moscow to end military aggression against Ukraine.” India, as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, was urged to adopt today’s draught resolution on restoring peace in Ukraine.” A senior Biden administration official had indicated the day before that Washington was bringing the resolution forward “with every expectation” that Russia would wield its veto and therefore “underline their isolation.”

“First and foremost, we expect Russia to exercise its veto. They’ll be emphasizing their isolation throughout the process. We’re not going to compromise our values; we’re not going to sit on our hands and do nothing. “We must send a message to Ukraine, Russia, and the rest of the world that the Security Council will not turn a blind eye,” the person said. 

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