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Opinion

The UN condemns Russia for invading Ukraine

WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez - The Freeman

The United Nations 77th General Assembly voted overwhelmingly (141 nations) and condemned Russia for its war of aggression and annexation of Ukraine. The only “No” votes came from Russia's fellow authoritarian nations, North Korea, Eritrea, Syria, Russia, and Belarus. The following abstained: Iraq, Iran, India, Pakistan, and China. The Philippines voted yes and joined in the global outrage against the war crimes committed by Vladimir Putin.

The four-page UN General Assembly Resolution declared that the UN "deplores in the strongest terms the aggression by the Russian Federation against Ukraine". It explicitly demanded and with a tone of urgency ordered "the Russian Federation to immediately cease its use of force against Ukraine.” The resolution also, with categorical and unequivocal support for Ukraine, called on Russia to "completely and unconditionally withdraw all its military forces." This is a tremendous pressure on Vladimir Putin and should push his advisers to reexamine Russia's invasion of a sovereign state. Putin, of course, if we know him well, will just laugh off such a global expression of outrage, and would continue with even more devilish atrocities against the suffering people of Ukraine.

The EU representative Olof Skoog said in a press interview, that Russia is now standing practically alone before a world that totally condemns its invasion of Ukraine. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz declared that what Russia did through the orders of Putin has "no justification whatsoever." He said that it was nothing short of "imperialism, plain and simple". He also added that what Russia did to Ukraine is causing disaster to Europe and to the whole world. Japan's prime minister, Fumio Kishida, also said that what Russia did to Ukraine trampled the UN Charter. Lithuania President Gitanas Nauseda asked the UN to create a special tribunal to punish Russia for its crimes against Ukraine.

It is observed that both Putin and China's Xi Jinping are not attending the UN General Assembly. Well, they obviously do not want to face all the nations that express condemnation of the war crimes against Ukraine. The two autocratic leaders just had a meeting a few weeks ago in Russia. Meanwhile, to isolate Russia from the rest of the world, Canada joins the whole of Europe in closing its airports from all Russian planes. Switzerland is poised to freeze all Russian assets in the Swiss banks. Finland and Sweden are about to enter as members of NATO, thereby exacerbating the problems of Russia with neighboring states. People around the world are holding rallies and demonstrations against Russia in France, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Czech Republic, UK, USA, Australia, Canada, Spain, Japan, Mexico, and Italy.

Our delegation to the UN General Assembly stressed that the "principle of sovereignty and the sovereign equality of states is enshrined in the UN Charter. All states enjoy the right to full sovereignty in all their areas of jurisdiction. The UN Charter requires sovereign states to refrain from the use of force against political independence and territorial integrity of any state." The Philippines formal statement partly reads: "We strongly urge the cessation of hostilities" and "We call for massive assistance commensurate with the growing humanitarian crisis and echo the UN Secretary General's appeal for respect of humanitarian principles to protect civilian and civilian infrastructures in Ukraine. Safe access to humanitarian assistance must be assured by the most effective means."

The Filipinos cannot remain neutral in the face of a shameless and blatant assault against democracy, freedom, liberty, and human rights. To be indifferent is virtually an endorsement of the devilish rascals who put the whole world on the brink of annihilation by a potential nuclear war. We should stand up in support of the peoples of Ukraine and join in the condemnation of Russia and Vladimir Putin.

UNITED NATION

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