‘Will be based on our interests’: Shringla on India’s position on Ukraine crisis as New Delhi sends first tranche of humanitarian aid
NEW DELHI: With a number of resolutions coming up at the United Nations on the crisis in Ukraine, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla on Tuesday said India will consider those in their “entirety” and on the basis of national interests.
While at least two resolutions on the crisis are set to be brought before the UN Security Council, another is coming up at the UN General Assembly.
“In the UN, we take positions that are based on certain very careful considerations and certainly we do regard the merits of each and every case,” Shringla said at a media briefing.
“We will consider them in their entirety and take decisions in our best interests,” he said.
The foreign secretary was replying to a question on whether India’s position on the crisis will see some change following the death of an Indian student due to intense shelling in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Tuesday.
Last week, India abstained from voting on a resolution at the UN Security Council that sought to deplore the Russian military attack on Ukraine.
But at the same time, India called for respecting the “sovereignty and territorial integrity” of countries and sought immediate cessation of “violence and hostilities”.
While abstaining from voting on the resolution, India issued an “Explanation of Vote” (EoV), in which it called for a “return to the path of diplomacy” and sought immediate cessation of “violence and hostilities”.
India also told the UN Security Council that it has been in touch with all the parties concerned, urging them to return to the negotiating table.
“The contemporary global order has been built on the UN Charter, international law, and respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states,” India said in the EoV.
“All member states need to honour these principles in finding a constructive way forward. Dialogue is the only answer to settling differences and disputes, however daunting that may appear at this moment,” it said.
Russia used its veto power to block the US-sponsored resolution deploring in the “strongest terms” the Russian “aggression” against Ukraine.
Besides India, China and the United Arab Emirates also abstained from voting.
India on Tuesday sent the first tranche of humanitarian assistance comprising medicines and other relief materials to Ukraine via Poland.
At a media briefing, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said another flight will carry the second consignment of aid to the east European country on Wednesday.
“A flight left this morning carrying the first tranche of humanitarian assistance to Ukraine through Poland,” he said.
India on Monday decided to send the relief supplies to Ukraine to help it deal with the humanitarian situation along its border areas that has arisen out of tens of thousands of people attempting to flee the Russian invasion.
“The prime minister noted that the first consignment of relief supplies to Ukraine to deal with the humanitarian situation on Ukraine’s borders would be despatched tomorrow,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Monday.
Ukrainian envoy Igor Polikha thanked India for sending humanitarian aid to his country.