India abstained from voting on the draft resolution by Ukraine and its allies on the humanitarian crisis in the war-torn country arguing that the draft resolution didn't fully reflect India's expected focus and the need of hour is to focus on cessation of hostilities.
Speaking on the resolution by Ukraine and its allies on the humanitarian crisis in the war-torn country, TS Tirumurti, India's Permanent Representative to the United Nations on Thursday (local time) said that the humanitarian situation continues to worsen, particularly in the conflict zones in urban centers and reiterated India's call for an immediate ceasefire.
"India abstained on the resolution since what we require now is to focus on cessation of hostilities and on urgent humanitarian assistance. The draft resolution did not fully reflect our expected focus on these challenges." The UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine on Thursday, with 140 countries voting in favour and five against it.
A total of 38 countries including India abstained. Meanwhile, Russia, Belarus, Eritrea, North Korea and Syria voted against it. The resolution titled "Humanitarian consequences of the aggression against Ukraine" calls out Russia's "assault" on Ukraine for creating the "dire" humanitarian situation. In a nine-pointer statement, Ambassador Tirumurti urged the global leaders to enhance the humanitarian support to Kyiv and address the needs of the concerned population.
"We support the initiatives of UN, and its agencies. We hope the international community will continue to respond positively to the humanitarian needs of the people of Ukraine, including through extending generous support to the Secretary General's Flash Appeal and the Regional Refugee Response Plan on Ukraine," Tirumurti added. India has already sent over 90 tonnes of humanitarian supplies to Ukraine and its neighbours, as part of nine separate tranches of humanitarian assistance delivered thus far, he said adding that these supplies have included medicines and other essential relief material.
"We are in the process of sending further supplies in the coming days," Ambassador said further. Pointing out that India has ensured the safe return of about 22,500 Indians from Ukraine, he said: "We initiated Operation Ganga involving 90 flights. We have also assisted nationals from 18 other countries in that process. We are deeply appreciative of the facilitation rendered by the authorities of Ukraine and its neighbouring countries in ensuring their safe return." Tirumurti further underscored that it is important that humanitarian action is always guided by the principles of humanitarian assistance including humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence.
"These measures should not be politicized." "We firmly believe efforts at the United Nations should contribute to a de-escalation of the conflict; facilitate the immediate cessation of hostilities to promote dialogue and diplomacy and bring parties together to find an immediate end to the suffering of the people. We continue to underline the need to respect the UN Charter, international law and the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states," he said.