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Ukraine: Italy, EU call for respect of territorial integrity and dialogue

NEW YORK, JANUARY 31 – Italy joined the position expressed by the European Union in support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, respect for international law and constructive engagement in dialogue through the established international mechanisms of the United Nations, the Italian Mission to the UN said on Twitter while at the UN Headquarters an urgent meeting of the Security Council requested by the United States and opposed by Russia was underway.

With ten votes in favor today, the Council blocked Russia’s request to suspend the meeting on the situation on the border with Ukraine. Three member states abstained and China voted against aligning with Russia. The meeting of 15 nations, requested by the U.S., represented the highest-profile arena for the two powers to sway world opinion over Ukraine. As expected, it adjourned with no action taken.

Moscow claims that Washington deliberately foments tensions in the area using what its Ambassador Vasily Nebenzia defines as “megaphone diplomacy”. The United States in turn reiterated that it seeks only peace. “We don’t want confrontation, but we will be firm, swift and united should Russia further invade Ukraine”, said U.S. Ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield. “The situation we are facing in Europe is urgent and dangerous,”, she added in her opening remarks, because Russia’s actions “strike at the very heart of the U.N. charter.” She then accused Russia to “want it to happen. You’re waiting for it to happen, as if you want to make your words become a reality.”

The meeting was opened by Under Secretary for Political Affairs and Peacebuilding, Rosemary DiCarlo. She said that in all his contacts, the Secretary-General has unequivocally supported the ongoing diplomatic efforts on Ukraine at all levels. Still, she added, the UN remains greatly concerned that, even as these efforts continue, tensions keep escalating amid a dangerous military build-up in the heart of Europe.

Di Carlo stressed that the Secretary-General has made clear that there can be “no alternative to diplomacy and dialogue” to deal with the complex and long-standing security concerns and threat perceptions that have been raised. She said that the UN welcomes the steps taken so far by all involved to maintain dialogue and that “we urge and expect all actors to build on these efforts and to remain focused on pursuing diplomatic solutions by engaging in good faith”.  (@OnuItalia)

Il giornale Italiano delle Nazioni Unite. Ha due redazioni, una a New York, l’altra a Roma.

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