Russia was left more isolated than ever in the United Nations Organization (UN) this Friday after a historic vote in favor of an international investigation into Ukraine, in which allies as close to President Vladimir Putin as Venezuela and Cuba abstained.
Eritrea is the only country that voted against the resolution that Kiev put on the table of the Human Rights Council (HRC).
“Today, the HRC adopted a historic resolution. The message to Putin was clear: he is isolated internationally and the whole world is against him”, said the Ukrainian ambassador Yevheniia Filipenko, surrounded by many diplomats who later applauded her.
“Today, Council members voted overwhelmingly to create a commission of inquiry with a strong mandate. Members of the international community stand with Ukraine, and it is clear that Russia stands alone”, added the United States ambassador to the UN, Sheba Crocker.
The vote took place two days after the General Assembly of the United Nations, meeting in New York, overwhelmingly voted for a text to demand that Russia withdraw its troops from Ukraine and end the war.
The resolution had the support of Western countries, but also of other capitals that denounced that Moscow had not respected the territorial sovereignty of Ukraine and the violence exerted against the Ukrainian people.
China, which is usually opposed to any UN investigation, abstained, although Beijing had voted against holding the urgent debate on the Russian invasion.
“This week we have witnessed an unprecedented demonstration of the unity of the international community”, declared the British ambassador to the UN, Simon Manley.
The vote came after the Russian military carried out an attack on Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, Zaporizhia, in southern Ukraine.
“The bombing of the largest nuclear power plant in Europe may lead to a global catastrophe”, Filipenko warned before the Council.
It is the first time in the Council’s history that a resolution directly concerns Russia, a UN spokesman explained.
“There is only one aggressor in this war and that is Russia. Russia must be held accountable for these actions”, argued the French ambassador to the UN, Jérôme Bonnafont, on behalf of the European Union (EU).
The resolution condemns “the violations and attacks on human rights as a consequence of the aggression of the Russian Federation.”
The text claims “the rapid and verifiable withdrawal of Russian troops, and of armed groups allied with Russia, from the entire internationally recognized territory of Ukraine”, and calls for the urgent creation, and for one year (initially) of “an international and independent investigative commission”, the highest level of investigation of the Council.
The commission shallcollect, join and analyze the elements of evidence to attest violations” of human rights and international humanitarian law during the invasion of Ukraine, with a view to future processes, and identify those responsible for these violations “to answer for their actions.”
The Russian invasion caused much commotion in the world. Demonstrations against the war and gestures of solidarity with the Ukrainians have been multiplied by the bombings and the exodus of nearly 1.2 million people, according to the latest UN figures.
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