https://www.dw.com-NATO members and veto holders the UK, France and the US all objected to the Russian call to investigate supposed “military biological” activities in Ukraine with US support. The 10 non-permanent members all abstained.
The UN Security Council late on Wednesday rejected a resolution drafted by Russia to investigate its allegations that the US is developing biological weapons in Ukraine.
Russia and China were the only votes in favor of the investigation, while US, France and Britain, which all have veto powers, voted against. All 10 non-permanent members of the Security Council abstained.
Moscow had asked for a committee to investigate its allegations that Ukraine and the US are engaging in “military biological” activities outside the convention against the use of biological weapons. These claims were dismissed by the US and Ukraine as disinformation or even a possible precursor to a “false flag” operation by Russia.
Russia circulated the draft resolution and a 310-page document to council members last week, alleging biological activities were taking place in laboratories in Ukraine with support from the US Defense Department.
Russia’s deputy ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, expressed disappointment at the outcome of the vote.
“Western countries demonstrated in every way that the law does not apply to them,” he said. “This is a usual colonial mentality that we’re used to and we’re not even surprised by it.”
Russia plans to raise the issue again at the review conference of the Biological Weapons Convention, from November 28 to December 16 in Geneva.
US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield addressed the claims and said, “The US voted against this resolution because it is based on disinformation, dishonesty, bad faith and a total lack of respect” for the Security Council.
Both Western powers and Russia have faced considerable difficulty passing any resolutions on the conflict in Ukraine through the Security Council, given that at least four of the world’s five veto holders have strong and conflicting opinions on it.
Here are the other main headlines from the war in Ukraine on Thursday, November 3:
Ships carrying agricultural goods leave Black Sea ports
Seven ships transporting agricultural products departed the Ukrainian Black Sea ports on Thursday, Kyiv’s infrastructure ministry said.
This development came a day after Russia on Wednesday made the decision to reaffirm the grain export deal, allowing Ukrainian grain to be exported over the Black Sea.
This opens the prospect of exporting Ukrainian food to international markets.
The transport ships were sailing for European and Asian nations with 290,000 tonnes of food items, the ministry said.
Zelenskyy hails Russia’s agreeing to resume grain export deal
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed Russia’s decision to resume the deal to allow the export of Ukrainian grain via the Black Sea on Wednesday.
Zelenskyy called it “a significant diplomatic result for our country and the whole world” in his nightly video address after the resuscitation of the deal reached between Kyiv and Moscow in July, mediated by Turkey and the UN.
The Ukrainian president said Russia’s call for guarantees reflected “the failure of the Russian aggression.” After eight months of war, “the Kremlin is demanding security guarantees from Ukraine,” he said.
Russia said it had pulled out of the accord over the weekend after an attack on its Black Sea fleet.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the reversal of the decision was influenced by the Ukrainian government’s assurance that it won’t launch strikes via the maritime corridor.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country had the right to walk out of the grain deal once again, should Ukraine violate its security guarantees.
About 14 million people forced from their homes: UNHCR
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has caused the biggest and fastest human displacement in decades, impacting about 14 million people, according to UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) director Filippo Grandi.
Speaking to the UN Security Council in New York on Wednesday, he called for “an end to this senseless war.”
“Some 14 million people have been forced from their homes,” since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Grandi said.
According to the UNHCR, more than 7 million Ukrainians have immigrated abroad — around 1 million of them to Germany. Grandi said the UN agency is getting ready for additional population movements both within and outside of Ukraine.
He warned that Ukrainians were poised to face “one of the world’s harshest winters in extremely difficult circumstances,” even as destruction of civilian infrastructure is “quickly making the humanitarian response look like a drop in the ocean of needs.”
ss/msh (AFP, AP, dpa, Reuters)