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Russia vetoes a UN Security Council resolution against its annexation of Ukrainian territories


US President Joe Biden warns in Washington that “we will continue to provide Ukraine with the equipment it needs to defend itself”

Russia's veto prevented this Friday the UN Security Council from approving a draft resolution, presented by the United States and Albania, which condemned the annexation announced by Moscow of Ukrainian territories.

Ten countries voted in favour, including the UK and Norway.

Four abstained: Brazil, Gabon, India and China.

Russia was the only country to speak out against the resolution, after its ambassador to the UN, Vasili Nebenzia, lashed out at the West, whom he accused of wanting to destroy his country, and a Security Council that he believed had “lost even the last shreds of decorum” with this vote.

As a permanent member of the Council, his vote against condemned the draft resolution to the box of impossible attempts.

The Russian negative vote was taken for granted from the first moment.

The US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, had stated before the Council meeting that if the resolution did not go ahead, his country would appeal to the General Assembly, which voted in favor of condemning Russia after the start of the the invasion on February 24.

"If Russia blocks the Security Council from fulfilling its responsibilities, we will go to the General Assembly, where all countries have the right to vote, to make it clear that it is unacceptable to modify borders by force," said the head of US diplomacy.

The United States ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, had presented the draft resolution at the beginning of the extraordinary session, which asked the members of the UN not to recognize any alteration to the territorial integrity of Ukraine and which obliged Russia to withdraw its troops from the invaded country.

Russian President Vladimir Putin had announced hours earlier that Russia would incorporate into its territory four Ukrainian regions occupied by Moscow - Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhia - where supposedly popular annexation consultations, called by Moscow, concluded on Tuesday.

The annexation would represent the largest in Europe since the end of World War II: the four areas add up to 15% of Ukrainian territory.

China, Moscow's great strategic partner, opted for abstention.

His ambassador, Zhang Jun, expressed concern about a “prolonged and widened” crisis in Ukraine.

But he also clarified that, although the "sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries" must be protected -two fundamental principles for its own internal policy, especially in Xinjiang and Tibet, and in the autonomous territory of Hong Kong-, it is necessary to have also taking into account the "legitimate security concerns" of the countries involved.

The presentation of the draft resolution culminated a day of mobilization of US diplomacy to condemn and punish Putin after the announcement of the annexation.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan was speaking with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg about the Russian initiative and the need to protect key infrastructure after the North Stream 2 gas pipeline sabotage.

After Russian intentions became known, Washington announced the imposition of sanctions against hundreds of high-ranking Russian officials, including legislators, and various companies in the military-industrial complex.

But he did not want to penalize the energy sector, the country's main source of foreign currency.

“We are going to mobilize the international community to denounce (Moscow's) initiatives and to hold Russia to account.

We will continue to provide Ukraine with the equipment it needs to defend itself, undeterred by Russia's reckless attempt to alter its neighbor's borders," US President Joe Biden said in a statement.

Specifically, the Treasury has imposed sanctions against fourteen representatives of the Russian military-industrial complex, two senior central bank officials, relatives of senior officials and 278 members of the Russian legislature.

Affected individuals include Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak and Governor of the Russian Central Bank, Elvira Nabiullina.

In addition, the Treasury Department has warned of the risk of sanctions for companies and individuals outside of Russia that may provide political or economic assistance to Moscow.

Among the companies punished this Friday is the Chinese Sinno Electronics, which Washington accuses of assisting the Radioavtomatika Defense company.

The Commerce Department has included 57 other entities in Russia and on the Crimean peninsula on its export restriction list.

And the State Department has placed visa restrictions on 910 individuals, including members of the Russian military and Belarusian military commanders.

"We will maintain strong and coordinated American efforts to hold Russia accountable, isolate the Russian military from global trade, and severely limit its ability to sustain aggression and project power," Blinken said.

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2022-09-30

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