United Nations, Sept 20 (EFE).- Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke Wednesday at the United Nations Security Council during a debate on the war in Ukraine to defend his country’s right to veto council resolutions after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and others proposed limits to it.
“The right of veto is a legitimate instrument established in the UN Charter to prevent the adoption of decisions that can divide the organization,” Lavrov argued.
Lavrov defended Russia’s veto power (which it shares with the other four permanent members: the US, China, France, and the UK) after the council’s ten non-permanent members called for it to be limited, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky proposed a mechanism to circumvent it.
The Russian minister, who has been at the helm of his country’s diplomacy for nearly 20 years, pointed to “an aggressive Western clique that is raising the issue of veto abuse and wrongly focusing on certain UN members” in a clear reference to his own country.
Russia has been the most active Security Council member using the veto to block resolutions.
Lavrov further stated that the United States and its allies are “openly and without subterfuge trying to privatize the UN Secretariat (because they believe) they have the right to accuse those who, for one reason or another, are inconvenient to Washington.”
The minister said that the United States and its allies are “openly and without pretense trying to privatize the UN Secretariat (because they believe) they have the right to accuse those who for one reason or another are inconvenient for Washington.”
He ended his speech with a wink to Third World countries (many of them recently emerging from coups) that are subject to Security Council sanctions.
“Humanitarian limitations on sanctions should be considered, as they should be accompanied by considerations by UN agencies of their humanitarian consequences, rather than by demagogic exhortations by colleagues in the West. It is as simple as this: that ordinary people do not suffer.”
Although Lavrov did not name any specific countries, many of the sanctioned countries are allies of Russia, including Syria, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, and Mali.
Lavrov spoke at length about the war in Ukraine, merely repeating the arguments that Zelensky’s government discriminates against and mistreats Russian speakers and that his country favors negotiations with Ukraine but without preconditions. EFE