September 24, 2022

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky presented a five-point “peace formula” between himself and invading Russia during a United Nations General Assembly debate on Wednesday, identifying the first step as “punishment.”

Zelensky addressed forum from Kiev, a move that the Assembly voted to allow by 101 members to seven. Zelensky named and shamed seven — the communist nations of Belarus, Cuba, North Korea, Eritrea, Nicaragua, plus Russia and Russian proxy Bashar al-Assad’s Syria — accusing them of fearing his words.

Ukraine is currently embroiled in an almost nine-year war with Russia that began with the invasion and colonization of the Ukrainian region of Crimea and the beginning of the ongoing conflict in the Donbass region, where pro-Russian separatists have declared the establishment of two “sovereign” states. In February, Russian leader Vladimir Putin announced that he would recognize the Donbass Donetsk and Lugansk “People’s Republics” as countries and would send Russian armed forces to Ukraine at their request to “denazify” Zelensky’s government. Zelensky, elected to “pro-russian” candidate in the 2019 free and fair elections, expressed his offense at being labeled a Nazi, highlighting his Jewish heritage.

Putin’s efforts in Ukraine have stalled since the bombing of the greater Kiev area in the first half of the year. Ukrainian forces recently claimed to have recaptured several southern municipalities. On Wednesday, Putin announced a partial military mobilization, including conscription, aimed at reversing what outside observers believe is a significant decline in Russia’s success on the ground in the war.

Zelenskiy discussed the war before the General Assembly through the lens of a five-point plan that he argued could be universally applied to any conflict to achieve peace. Before revealing the plan, he insisted to those urging Ukraine and Russia to negotiate that the time for diplomacy had run out and that talks had indeed been tried but failed.

“We held 88 rounds of talks in different formats to prevent this war, just from the beginning of my presidency until February 24 this year,” he recalled.

Zelensky argued that his peace plan would necessarily require significant reform of the United Nations, later questioning the logic of permanent Security Council seats for rogue states like Russia and the toothless UN agency.

“I’m going to present a formula that can work not only for us, but for anyone who finds themselves in similar circumstances to us,” he said. “It is a formula that punishes crime, protects lives, restores security and territorial integrity, guarantees safety and gives determination. There are five prerequisites for peace.”

The punishment, he stated, was the first step in his plan to end the wars.

Zelensky called for universal sanctions on Russia, from banning Russian tourists from entering free countries to banning Russia from participating in international forums like the Security Council, including commercial sanctions to impoverish the Russian economy.

“Blocking trade and relations with the aggressor is part of the peace formula. All this is punishment. As long as the aggressor is a party to decision-making in international organizations, he must be isolated from them – at least until the aggression lasts,” said Zelenski. “Reject the right to vote. Withdraw delegation rights. Remove the veto – if she is a member of the UN Security Council.”

“Citizens of the aggressor state should not be allowed to enjoy tourism or shopping in the territory of those who value peace, but should be encouraged by visa restrictions to fight against the aggression of their own state,” he continued. “Punish for supporting evil. A Special Court should be established to punish Russia for the crime of aggression against our country. This will become a signal to all “potential” aggressors that they must value peace or the world will hold them accountable.”

Zelenskiy’s other four elements of peace – protection of life, “restoration of security and territorial integrity”, “security guarantees” and “determination” – offered less specific courses of action for other nations. Zelensky encouraged other countries to name Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism for their war and to seek military agreements with Ukraine that would deter further Russian action – although he did not list NATO membership as a particular aspiration.

Zelensky concluded by condemning not only Russia’s allies, but also countries that chose not to support either side.

“Those who talk about neutrality, when human values ​​and peace are under attack, think of something else. They are talking about indifference – each for himself,” said the Ukrainian president. “Here’s what they say. They pretend to be interested in each other’s problems. They formally take care of each other. They sympathize only with protocol. And that’s why they pretend to protect someone, but in reality they only protect their own interests.”

“This is what creates the conditions for war. This is what needs to be corrected in order to create the conditions for peace,” he concluded.

Follow Frances Martel further Facebook and Twitter.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.