UNSC discusses Ukraine, Russia defends action as ‘appropriate’

PTI Yoshita Singh United Nations | Updated on March 13, 2018 Published on March 04, 2014

Russia has told the UNSC that Ukraine’s deposed President Viktor Yanukovich had requested it to use Russian army to restore law and order and protect its people, an assertion rejected by Kiev which said that the fugitive leader did not have authority to seek foreign help.

The powerful UN Security Council held an emergency meeting here yesterday for the third time in four days as the crisis in Ukraine escalated.

During the stormy and lengthy session, Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin showed a letter purportedly from Yanukovich to President Vladimir Putin seeking Russian military intervention in Ukraine.

After the meeting, Churkin read out a translated but unofficial version of the letter to reporters. “Ukraine is on the brink of civil war...The country has plunged into chaos and anarchy”, Churkin said reading the letter.

“The country is in the grip of outright terror and violence driven by the West. People are persecuted on political and language grounds”, he read from Yanukovich’s letter, dated March 1.

“In this context, I appeal to the President of Russia Vladimir V Putin to use the armed forces of the Russian Federation to re—establish the rule of law, peace, order, stability and to protect the people of Ukraine.”

Ukraine’s envoy to the UN Yuriy Sergeyev rejected Yanukovich’s authority to seek foreign intervention in his country saying that only the Ukrainian Parliament has any say in asking for military intervention from foreign powers.

“He is nobody now in terms of the current situation in Ukraine”, Sergeyev told reporters when asked to comment on Yanukovich’s letter to Putin.

“He is nobody to speak, to count now. He is out of the country. The only legal body in Ukraine — our Parliament (which) according to the Constitution if needed could invite military assistance from abroad”, Sergeyev said.

He said that the Russians are using the pretext of protecting human rights to invade Ukraine but it is their duty, and that if they are not capable to do so then the international community should tell them.

Sergeyev earlier told the UNSC that Russia had deployed roughly 16,000 troops from Russian territory to Ukraine’s autonomous region of the Crimea since February 24, which he described an illegal invasion.

He said that the troops were in addition to those deployed by Russia for the Black Sea fleet in the Crimea under an arrangement with Kiev. Sergeyev sought the UN’s help in a letter sent to all 193 UN member states detailing Russia’s takeover of crucial government and military facilities.

The UNSC session saw heated exchanges between Western envoys and the Russian ambassador over the military deployment by Moscow in the Eastern European country.

Published on March 04, 2014
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