Home/ News / India/  India explains why it abstained from voting on UNGA resolution on Ukraine war

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine completes a year on Friday, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution calling for an end to the war in Ukraine. Like, all other international resolutions on the issue India again abstained saying that the move wasn’t enough to achieve the goal of lasting peace.

The non-binding resolution demanded that Russia “immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all of its military forces from the territory of Ukraine" and called for a cessation of hostilities. The resolution also urged the members to cooperate with each other and address the global impacts of the war on food security, energy, finance, the environment, and nuclear security.

Out of 193-memebrs of the UNGA, 141 backed the resolution, while seven nations like Russia, North Korea voted against it. India and China were part of 32 countries which abstained on the resolution.

India's permanent representative at United Nations, Ruchira Kamboj affirmed that India is committed to multilateralism and the principles of the UN Charter, but the resolution has “inherent limitations" in reaching the desired goal.

“India remains steadfastly committed to multilateralism and upholds the principles of the UN Charter. We will always call for dialogue and diplomacy as the only viable way out. While we take note of the stated objective of today’s resolution, given its inherent limitations in reaching our desired goal of securing a lasting peace, we are constrained to abstain," she said.

“Are we anywhere near a possible solution acceptable to both sides? Can any process that does not involve either of the two sides ever lead to a credible and meaningful solution?" Kamboj asked. “Has the UN system, and particularly its principal organ, the UN Security Council, based on a 1945-world construct, not been rendered ineffective to address contemporary challenges to global peace and security?"

Kamboj said that India remains concerned about the developments in Ukraine where conflict has “resulted in the loss of countless lives and misery, particularly for women, children, and the elderly, with millions becoming homeless and forced to seek shelter in neighboring countries".

She reiterated Prime Minister Narendra Modi's statement directed at Russian President Vladimir Putin, where he said “this is not the era of war."

“We have consistently advocated that no solution can ever be arrived at the cost of human lives. In this context, our Prime Minister’s statement that this cannot be an era of war bears reiteration. Escalation of hostilities and violence is in no one’s interest, instead an urgent return to the path of dialogue and diplomacy is the way forward," she said.

The Indian representative also emphasized the international principles and jurisprudence which make it clear that civilians or civilian infrastructure should not be targeted during a war between two nations.

Kamboj also touched upon another angle and pointed out the “unintended consequences" of the war on the Global South. She stressed that the voice of developing nations should be heard and their legitimate concerns are addressed.

“India’s approach to the Ukraine conflict will continue to be people-centric. We are providing both humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and economic support to some of our neighbours in the Global South under economic distress, even as they stare at the escalating costs of food, of fuel, and of fertilisers - which has been a consequential fallout of the ongoing conflict," she said.

She said that the resolution seeks more support from UN members for diplomatic efforts to achieve peace between warring nations, but “reports from the ground portray a complex scenario, with the conflict intensifying on several fronts".

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Updated: 24 Feb 2023, 10:21 PM IST
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