Russia has vetoed the Security Council resolution condemning the annexation of Ukrainian territories

The draft resolution circulated by the USA and Ukraine was approved by 10 of the 15 members of the Council, and Russia voted against it. Four members namely Brazil, China, Gabon and India abstained.

The draft resolution characterized so-called referendums organized by Russia in four regions of Ukraine – Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporozhye – now recognized by Moscow as sovereign territory – as illegal and an attempt to change Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.

The text called on all states, international organizations and agencies not to recognize Russia’s declaration of annexation and called on Russia to “immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all its military forces from the territory of Ukraine.”

Because of Russia’s veto, the United Nations General Assembly must now meet within ten days to allow its 193 members to review and comment on the Russian Federation’s decision, since the new procedure was adopted in April, where any appeal of the veto must be made by one of the Council’s five permanent members. it automatically triggers a debate in the Assembly.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday condemned the annexation plan as a violation of international law, calling it a “dangerous escalation” in the war that began seven months ago when Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.

“The charter is clear,” said the UN chief. “The annexation of the territory of one state by another state as a result of the threat or use of force is a violation of the Principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”

The United States wants to defend the sacred principles of sovereignty

Speaking before the vote, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield called the referendums a “fraud”, the results of which were pre-determined in Moscow and “carried out with Russian weapons”.

“We are all interested in protecting the sacred principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity, and in protecting peace in our modern world,” he told other ambassadors.

“We all understand the consequences for our borders, our economies and our countries if these principles are violated,” he said. “It concerns our collective security, our collective responsibility to maintain international peace and security… This is the role of this body of the United Nations.”

There is no going back, says Russia

Responding on behalf of Russia, Ambassador Vasiliy Nebenzya accused the drafters of the draft resolution of “low-level provocation” aimed at forcing his country to use the veto.

“Such openly hostile actions by the West represent a refusal to join and cooperate with the Council, a rejection of the experience and expertise gained over many years,” he said.

The Russian representative referred to the “great support” expressed by residents of the four regions claimed by Russia. “People from these regions do not want to return to Ukraine. They made an informed and free choice for the benefit of our country.”

He said that the result of the so-called referendum was confirmed by international observers, and now that it has been approved by the Russian parliament and presidential decrees, “there will be no turning back, on the contrary, what will be today’s draft resolution. try to apply”.

A view of the Security Council chamber during a meeting on threats to international peace and security.

Leaks in the Nord Stream gas pipelines

Members of the Security Council resumed their meeting in New York on Friday afternoon to consider this week’s leak of the Nord Stream gas pipeline, which the NATO military alliance, like other observers, considered an act of provocation.

Earlier in the day, Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the West of being responsible for the damage to these Russian-built undersea gas pipelines – a charge the US and its allies strongly denied.

Briefing the ambassadors on behalf of the UN, Navid Hanif, Assistant for Economic Development of the UN Secretary-General’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), said that while the causes of the four leaks should be investigated, “it is as urgent as worrying about their consequences.”

Mr Hanif said the UN could not confirm details of the leaks discovered on Monday. The Nord Steam 1 and 2 pipelines have been at the center of the European energy supply crisis stemming from Russia’s invasion in February, and neither pipeline is currently serving gas to European countries.

Mr. Hanif highlighted three main effects of the leaks, first mentioning their detrimental effect on global energy markets.

“The event could exacerbate high price volatility in energy markets in Europe and globally,” he said, adding that potential environmental damage was another area of ​​concern.

The danger of methane

Referring to the environmental consequences, he said the leaks would “result in the emission of hundreds of thousands of tonnes of methane, which has 80 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide”.

Finally, he added, the pipeline explosions also clearly demonstrated how vulnerable critical energy infrastructure is in times of global crisis. For this reason, Mr. Hanif emphasized the need to transition to a clean, sustainable and sustainable energy system, while ensuring universal access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all.

Finally, he told the Security Council that any attack on civilian infrastructure was unacceptable and that the incident should not further escalate tensions in the context of an escalating war.

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