At UN, Ukraine accuses Russia of being a 'terrorist state' | War in Ukraine
Sergiy Kyslytsya, the Ukrainian ambassador to the United Nations, has accused Russia of being a “terrorist state”. (Archives)
Ukraine accused Russia of being a 'terrorist state' at the UN on Monday, hours after massive bombings of Ukrainian towns that killed civilians and were unanimously condemned by the West.
All the member countries of the UN met in the afternoon, in New York, in an emergency general assembly to discuss urgent x27;a resolution condemning the annexation of Ukrainian regions by Moscow.
With this resolution, which could be put to the vote on Wednesday, the West hopes to show that Russia of the President Vladimir Putin is isolated on the international stage.
But it was Monday morning's strikes that dominated the meeting and the two warring countries crossed swords before the United Nations.
Russia has once again proven that it is a terrorist state that must be deterred in the strongest possible way, hammered the Ukrainian ambassador to the UN Sergiy Kyslytsya.
In response, his Russian counterpart Vasily Nebenzia compared the kyiv regime to the most outrageous of terrorist organizations, two days after the explosion – a sabotage according to Moscow – which seriously damaged Russia's Crimean bridge.
Ahead of the general assembly, the deeply shocked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres denounced the Russian bombings: a new unacceptable escalation of the war for which civilians are paying the price the highest.
More people will be forced to flee their homes in Ukraine, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi warned Monday after the strikes.
L' horror of what happened in Ukraine today… is inexcusable, the Italian diplomat told reporters. I fear that the events of the past few hours will cause further displacement.
US President Joe Biden railed against the outright brutality of his Russian counterpart, while European diplomacy denounced barbaric attacks.
Ukrainian emergency services made state a provisional toll of 11 dead and 89 wounded across the country, but Ambassador Kyslytsya mentioned 14 civilians killed and 97 wounded.
Before the strikes, the UN had decided to bring the file of annexations of Ukrainian regions to its general assembly – where each of the 193 members has one vote, without veto – after Russia had blocked a similar text in the Security Council. September 30.
The draft text seen by AFP condemns the illegal annexations of the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson after so-called referendums and stresses that these actions have no validity under international law. He also wants no one to recognize these annexations and calls for the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine.
In a letter to all member states, Russia attacked Western delegations, whose actions have nothing to do with upholding international law.
The session at the general assembly was disrupted by a procedural battle launched by Moscow to obtain, in vain, a vote of the resolution by secret ballot, an unusual procedure reserved in principle for elections, for example of members of the Security Council.
Mr. Guterres had also denounced the annexations of Ukrainian territories: this flouts the purposes and principles of the United Nations. It is a dangerous escalation. It has no place in the modern world. This must not be accepted, he argued on September 29.
The words of the UN chief prove that it is not a question of the West against Russia, a US official commented.
In the Security Council vote, no country sided with Russia, but four (China, India, Brazil and Gabon) abstained.
While some developing countries resent the West's focus on Ukraine, others may follow suit this week.
The vote will assess the degree of isolation of Russia. The efforts of defenders of the text to convince potential abstainers are thus going well.
Visiting Africa, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kouleba said he urged Africa not to remain neutral in the vote, according to a statement from the Ukrainian Embassy in Dakar. /p>
This is going to be hard. The resolution against the annexation of Crimea in 2014 received around 100 votes. I think we will have more this time, said a European official, counting on 100 to 140 votes for.
The first two resolutions of the General Assembly against the Russian invasion in March received 141 and 140 votes for, 5 against (Russia, Belarus, Syria, North Korea and Eritrea) and 35 to 38 abstentions.
The third at the end of April, which suspended Russia from the Human Rights Council, had resulted in a breakdown of international unity in the face of Moscow, with much more abstentions (58) and votes against (24) against 93 votes for.