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US, Russia clash over Ukraine at UN Security Council debate – POLITICO

In a public showdown Monday at the United Nations Security Council, the U.S. accused Russia of undermining worldwide peace and safety by massing troops on the Ukrainian border.

However Russia slapped again, arguing Washington was fear-mongering and forcing an pointless debate — allegations China later echoed.

The heated, at occasions offended, rhetoric at U.N. headquarters in New York got here as some 100,000 Russian troops are positioned alongside Ukraine’s japanese border with Russia in addition to its northern border with Belarus. The U.S. known as the Security Council assembly to confront Russia over fears that an invasion is imminent.

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“Russia’s actions strike at the very coronary heart of the U.N. Constitution,” stated U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield. “That is as clear and consequential a risk to peace and safety as anybody can think about.”

She added: “Russia’s aggression right this moment not solely threatens Ukraine. It additionally threatens Europe. It threatens the worldwide order.”

Russia objected to the open assembly from the outset, instantly demanding a procedural vote searching for to stop it, which failed.

“This isn’t solely unacceptable interference within the home affairs of our state, but in addition an try to mislead the worldwide neighborhood on the scenario within the area, and likewise the explanation for the present world tensions,” stated Russian U.N. Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya. “We’re being requested to convene a Security Council assembly on unfounded accusations that we’ve refuted continuously.”

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U.S. President Joe Biden and different Western leaders have warned {that a} Russian assault on Ukraine may come at any second. Russia has repeatedly denied any hostile intent whereas insisting the troops are merely conducting workout routines.

The U.S. determined to push for the general public U.N. debate earlier than Russia takes over the Security Council presidency on February 1.

“This physique is charged with upholding an order that if it stands for something it stands for the precept that one nation can’t merely redraw one other nation’s borders by power,” Thomas-Greenfield stated. “We proceed to hope Russia chooses the trail of diplomacy over the trail of battle in Ukraine. However we can’t simply wait and see.”

The U.S. ambassador argued the worldwide neighborhood can be naïve to not acknowledge the chance in Russia’s troop buildup.

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“These are fight forces and particular forces ready to conduct offensive actions into Ukraine,” she stated. “That is the biggest, that is the biggest — hear me clearly — mobilization of troops in Europe in many years. And, as we converse, Russia is sending much more forces and arms to hitch them.” 

Nebenzya, nonetheless, hit again, disputing even the variety of troops stationed on the border.

“They themselves are whipping up tensions and rhetoric and upsetting escalation,” he stated. “You’re ready for it to occur as if you wish to make your phrases turn into a actuality. This although we’re continually rejecting these allegations.”

Nebenzya continued: “The place did you get the determine of 100,000 troops which are deployed as you stated on the Russian Ukrainian border, though that’s not the case? We’ve got by no means cited that determine, we’ve by no means confirmed that determine.”

China agreed that the assembly mustn’t have been known as.

“The rationale why the U.S. was asking the council to carry this open assembly was that Russia’s deployment of troops alongside the Ukrainian border posed a risk to worldwide peace and safety,” stated Chinese language U.N. Ambassador Zhang Jun. “China can’t align itself with this standpoint.”

Zhang defined China’s place: “Russia has repeatedly said that it has no plans to launch any army motion. And Ukraine has made it clear that it doesn’t want a struggle. Beneath such circumstances, what’s the foundation for the nation’s concern to insist that there could also be a struggle?”

Ukraine’s ambassador to the U.N., Sergiy Kyslytsya, rebuked Russia and different diplomats for attempting to talk on Kyiv’s behalf. He accused them of appearing like Humpty-Dumpty, the wall-sitting egg in Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland” who gave his personal which means to phrases.

“Lewis Carroll seems to be a favourite author of the Russian high diplomats,” Kyslytsya stated dryly. 

He insisted Ukraine would do nothing to justify any army motion by Russia.

“Ukraine just isn’t going to launch a army offensive, neither in Donbass, nor in Crimea, nor wherever else,” Kyslytsya stated. “Ukraine sees no various to peaceable decision of the continuing battle and restoration of its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

He added, “We’re properly conscious of Russia’s historical past of ploys and provocations.” 

Kyslytsya additionally challenged Russian President Vladimir Putin to satisfy Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in particular person.

“If Russia has any inquiries to Ukraine, it’s higher to satisfy and speak to not carry troops to the Ukrainian borders and intimidate Ukrainian individuals,” he stated, including that Ukraine would solely belief Russia’s actions, not its phrases. 

“If Russian officers are severe once they say they don’t desire a new struggle,” he stated. “Russia should proceed diplomatic engagement and pull again army forces.” 

Kenya entered the dialog to name on the massive powers at the round desk to work out their points and never trigger issues for others.

“When elephants battle,” stated Kenyan U.N. Ambassador Martin Kimani, “it’s the grass that suffers.”

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