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1 Feb, 2022 17:34

Stop talking about Russian ‘invasion’ of Ukraine, China tells UN

According to an official, the UN Security Council is not the place to discuss the matter
Stop talking about Russian ‘invasion’ of Ukraine, China tells UN

Using the UN Security Council to debate the standoff on the border between Russia and Ukraine is inappropriate, and consultations would be better held in a different setting, China’s envoy has said as tensions flare in Eastern Europe.

Speaking on Monday at a meeting of the UN’s top security body, requested by the US, Beijing’s permanent representative Zhang Jun said that discussing the situation at an open assembly “does not contribute to reducing tensions.”

“Russia has repeatedly stated that it has no plans to launch any military action. And Ukraine has made it clear that it does not need a war,” the ambassador added. “Under such circumstances, what is the basis for the countries concerned to insist that there would be a war?”

According to the envoy, “the parties involved should seek to resolve their differences through dialogue and negotiations.”

“We urgently need quiet diplomacy now, not megaphone diplomacy,” Zhang insisted. “Regrettably, the US did not accept such a constructive proposal.”

Western leaders have sounded the alarm several times in recent months, claiming that Moscow could be planning to imminently launch an invasion into Ukraine, which the Kremlin has repeatedly denied.

Last week, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba said that, while Moscow hasn’t yet ordered an offensive against its neighbor, Kiev was “already suffer[ing] economically and becom[ing] weaker because of the panic spread into society.”

In late January, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told citizens in a televised address that the risk of an invasion had not risen. “There is more hype about it now,” he explained. The secretary of Kiev’s National Security Council, Alexey Danilov, also sought to downplay the threat, adding that “the buildup of Russian troops isn’t as rapid as some claim.”