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India pushes for accelerated diplomatic resolution to Ukraine issue

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India pushes for accelerated diplomatic resolution to Ukraine issue
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India's Permanent Representative to the UN,  TS Tirumurti (file photo)

New York: India has raised concerns over the escalation in tension between Ukraine and Russia, calling for both sides and all involved to engage in amicable diplomacy and resolve the issue at the earliest. The move comes shortly after Vladimir Putin recognised two separatist-dominated areas in Ukraine, prompting further worries of invasion.

The UN Security Council called an emergency meeting shortly after the announcement made by Russia which prompted India to remark that the new developments had the potential to "undermine peace and security in the region."

"We need to give space to the recent initiatives undertaken by parties which seek to diffuse tensions. In this context, we welcome the intense efforts underway, including through the Trilateral Contact Group and under the Normandy format. We need Parties to exert greater efforts to bridge divergent interests. We cannot afford to have a military escalation," TS Tirumurti, India's Permanent Representative to United Nations, said at the UN Security Council Meeting.

India also emphasised that it was concerned about the safety and security of civilians, saying that "utmost restraint" should be used by all involved. The Normandy format talks involve Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France, and the Minsk Agreements were finalised in 2014 to end fighting in the Donbas region.

"We need parties to exert greater efforts to bridge divergent interests. We cannot afford to have a military escalation," Tirumurti said, highlighting the need for constructive diplomacy to avoid scaling up of tensions.

"Safety and security of civilians essential. More than 20,000 Indian students and nationals live and study in different parts of Ukraine, including in its border areas. The well-being of Indians is of priority to us," Mr Tirumurti said.

India asked all sides to intensify diplomatic efforts to reach for an amicable solution at the earliest.

"In conclusion, we strongly emphasize the vital need for all sides to maintain international peace and security by exercising the utmost restraint and intensifying diplomatic efforts to ensure that a mutually amicable solution is arrived at the earliest," Mr Tirumurti said.

Russia has praised India for it's relatively neutral stance on the issue compared to Wester nations like the US who have been warning of an immediate Russian invasion of Ukraine. The US claims satellite imagery shows Russian troops massed in "tactical" positions on the border, contrary to Russia's claims of withdrawal of the military.

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TAGS:Ukraine border crisis India Security Council Russia 
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