Russia Isolated as India Breaks Streak of UN Abstentions, Votes Against It
NEW YORK, NY (IANS) – Breaking its streak of abstentions on votes related to Ukraine, India has voted for a procedural matter that Russia opposed at the UN Security Council.
Going against Moscow’s stance, India on August 24 joined 12 other members of the Council to vote for inviting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to speak via a remote video link.
China abstained on the vote and Russia naturally voted against the invitation, but because it was a procedural matter it did not count as a veto.
When the meeting began, Russia’s Permanent Representative Vassily Nbenzia, objecting to Zelensky’s video link arrangement, demanded he should come in person to the Council chamber and asked for the vote, which ended up showing Moscow’s isolation.
Although this was the first time India had not abstained on a matter linked to Ukraine and voted with the West, a diplomatic source played down its significance. “It was (only) for or against Zelensky’s participation” in the meeting through a video link, the source pointed out.
While speaking at the meeting, India’s Permanent Representative Ruchira Kamboj stuck to New Delhi’s distinctive version of neutrality in the Ukraine conflict.
The meeting took place on a day of twin import for Ukraine — its Independence Day as well as six months since Russia launched its ongoing invasion of Kiev on February 24.
Allowed to speak by video link after the vote, Zelensky warned that the world’s security depended on how Russia’s invasion is handled.
Kamboj did not name Russia as she spoke of the war’s toll on Ukraine and its impact on the rest of the world. Nor did she offer overt support for Kiev while mentioning the humanitarian help India has rendered Ukraine.