Putin’s Ally Belarus Says UN Resolution on Ukraine ‘Invasion’ Is ‘Not in Line With Reality’

(CNSNews.com) – As the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday began a two-day meeting expected to end with a vote on a resolution on Russia’s year-long war in Ukraine, Moscow’s close ally Belarus called for amendments to the draft, including dropping a reference to a full-fledged Russian “invasion.”

Belarusian Ambassador Valentin Rybakov told the gathering that if Russia had indeed launched a full invasion – rather than a limited “special military operation,” the Kremlin’s preferred term – he doubted that any country on earth would have survived for “several hours or even minutes after that.”

He said the reference to an invasion was “not in line with reality.”

Rybakov said the amendments he was introducing aimed to “rectify inaccuracies in the text,” insert important language, and take the draft resolution “out of the gray area of half-truths.”

The proposed amendments included:


–Deleting a reference to Russia’s “full-scale invasion of Ukraine.”

–Replacing a sentence about Russian “aggression” and attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure with the phrase “hostilities in Ukraine.”

–Deleting a paragraph calling on Russia to “immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all of its military forces from the territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders.”

–Adding a line calling on member-states to stop sending weapons to the conflict zone.

The U.S. and other supporters of Ukraine called for the amendments to be rejected, describing them as “cynical” and “hostile.”

“Colleagues, I urge you to vote against – against any and all hostile amendments that seek to undermine the U.N. Charter and ignore the truth of this war,” said U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield. “I urge you, instead, to vote ‘yes’ in support of this resolution as it stands.”

The draft resolution under consideration is sponsored by more than 50 countries, most of them democracies in the West and Asia-Pacific.

It calls for “a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in Ukraine in line with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations,” and urges member-states and international organizations to “redouble support for diplomatic efforts” to achieve that goal.

It reaffirms the U.N.’s commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and demands that Russia “immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all of its military forces from the territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders.”

Ukraine’s “internationally recognized borders” incorporate Crimea, which President Vladimir Putin annexed in 2014, and Russian-occupied areas in Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, Donetsk, and Luhansk, which Putin, in his state of the nation speech this week, characterized as being part of the Russian “motherland.”

If it passes, the text due to be put to the vote on Thursday will be the sixth General Assembly resolution critical of the Russian invasion since it began a year ago.

In most of those votes Russia has won the support of just a small handful of allies in the 193-seat assembly, typically including Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea, and Syria’s Assad regime. (The vote to expel Russia from the Human Rights Council was an exception, with 24 countries voting “no.”)

The real lobbying battleground has focused on trying to persuade vacillating countries to take a stand and not “abstain” or absent themselves.

In the five earlier votes, the number of abstainers has ranged from a low of 35 to a high of 73. Among the more prominent abstainers have been India and South Africa, which abstained all five times. Brazil, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia abstained twice each.

“This is a moment for every member of the United Nations to stand and be counted,” E.U. foreign policy chief Josep Borrell told the meeting on Wednesday, urging all countries to vote in favor of the resolution.

‘A new set of supposed rules’

Russia-friendly views were aired by a representative of Venezuela’s Maduro regime, who in a joint statement on behalf of “like-minded” countries condemned unilateral sanctions, the provision of weapons that “prolong the conflict,” and what he called attempts to replace the U.N. Charter with “a new set of supposed rules which have never been debated in an inclusive or transparent way.”

The countries putting their names to the statement, all members of a coalition calling itself the “Group of Friends in Defense of the U.N. Charter,” were Belarus, Bolivia, Cambodia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea, Iran, Laos, Mali, Nicaragua, North Korea, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Syria, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.

Russia, along with China and other allies, charges that the “international rules-based order” is something invented by the U.S. and its allies to further their own interests and monopolize global affairs.

State Department spokesman Ned Price on Wednesday countered that the international rules-based order “was produced in the aftermath of the Second World War, in order to prevent a third.”

“This was not an order that the United States authored,” he said. “This was an order that countries came together – including at the U.N., in the U.N. Charter, in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, in international law – came together and ultimately put together.”

Both sides of the divide in the General Assembly over the Ukraine war claim to be seeking to uphold the U.N. Charter.

Both sides of the divide in the General Assembly over the Ukraine war claim to be seeking to uphold the U.N. Charter.

In his statement to the General Assembly on Wednesday, U.N. secretary-general Antonio Guterres stated unequivocally that the invasion of Ukraine “is a violation of the United Nations Charter and international law.”

“As I said from day one,” he said, “Russia’s attack on Ukraine challenges the cornerstone principles and values of our multilateral system.”


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