Russia, as expected, vetoed a UN Security Council resolution on Friday that “deplores in the strongest terms” the country’s “aggression” against Ukraine and demanded the immediate withdrawal of its troops.
Eleven of the council’s 15 members voted for the motion, which was co-written by the United States and Albania. China, India and the UAE abstained.
The resolution was always doomed to fail because of Moscow’s veto power as a permanent member of the council.
Still, the debate offered the chamber an important opportunity to voice its condemnation of President Vladimir Putin’s decision to launch a full-scale offensive against Russia’s neighbor.
“Let me make one thing clear,” US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield said after the vote. “Russia, you can veto this resolution, but you cannot veto our voices, you cannot veto the truth, you cannot veto our principles, you cannot veto the Ukrainian people.”
Russia, which currently holds the rotating Security Council presidency, will likely face another vote on a similar resolution before the wider UN General Assembly which could be passed by a substantial margin, although it would be non-binding.
“Make no mistake, Russia is isolated. It has no support for the invasion of Ukraine,” said Britain’s ambassador to the UN, Barbara Woodward.
Before the vote, Thomas-Greenfield described the attack as “so bold, so brazen, that it threatens our international system as we know it.
“We have a solemn obligation to not look away… At the very minimum, we have an obligation to object,” she said.
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