UNSC dilutes statement on Ukraine, opens window

The short UN Security Council statement expresses “strong support” for Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ efforts to find a peaceful solution to the Russia-Ukraine “dispute.”

The UN Security Council meets for an emergency session on Ukraine. (File/AP)
TEN weeks into the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the United Nations Security Council issued its first Presidential statement early Saturday — adopted by consensus, including Russia — which did not mention “war”, “conflict” or “invasion”. Instead, it referred to the conflict as a “dispute”.

This is UNSC’s first unanimously adopted statement, and it is significant that it took place under US presidency — it holds the rotational presidency of the UNSC for May — and Russia came on board with the language widely perceived to be significantly “watered down.”

Also read |There will be no winning side in Russia-Ukraine conflict, India tells UNSC
This statement comes as Russian forces renewed their attacks Saturday across Ukraine ahead of Victory Day festivities in Moscow Monday.

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India is a non-permanent member of the UNSC. In its statement, it made two important and new formulations: First, it said that “diplomacy will be a lasting casualty”.

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