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India’s Statement at UNSC Open Debate

September 22, 2023

Upholding the purposes and principles of the UN Charter through effective multilateralism: maintenance of peace and security of Ukraine

Thank you, Madame President, for giving me the floor. At the outset our felicitations to H.E. Prime Minister Edi Rama, for Albania’s successful Presidency of the UNSC and for convening this timely and important open debate today.

2.​India continues to remain concerned over the situation in Ukraine. We have always advocated that no solution can ever be arrived at the cost of human lives. Escalation of hostilities and violence is in no one’s interest. We have urged that all efforts be made for an immediate cessation of hostilities and an urgent return to the path of dialogue and diplomacy.

3.​The global order that we all subscribe to, is based on international law, principles of the UN Charter and respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all States. These principles must be upheld, without exception.

4.​Dialogue is the only answer to settling differences and disputes, however daunting that may appear at this moment. The path to peace requires us to keep all channels of diplomacy open.

5.​We note with regret that the collateral consequences of the conflict have led to rising prices of food, fuel and fertilizers, affecting the world at large and particularly the member states of the Global South, who have been left to fend for themselves. From our perspective, it is critical that their voices are heard and their legitimate concerns duly addressed. India’s G20 Presidency has ensured that some of these economic pitfalls faced by developing countries were brought to the forefront of the G20 Agenda and through a consensus-based approach a road map agreed upon, which also provided solutions for countries facing debt distress.

6. India’s approach to the Ukraine conflict will continue to be people centric. We are providing both humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and economic support to some of our neighbours in the Global South facing economic distress.

7. We need to avoid steps which endanger the possibility of dialogue and negotiations.

At the present juncture, we must pause and ask ourselves two pressing questions:

One, are we anywhere near a possible solution acceptable?

And if not, why is it that the UN system, and particularly its principal organ, this very UN Security Council, mandated to primarily maintain international peace and security, rendered completely ineffective to the resolution of the ongoing conflict?

For multilateralism to be effective, outdated and archaic structures need reform and reinventing, else their credibility will always be on the wane. And unless we fix that systemic flaw, we will continue to be found wanting.

8. To conclude, we continue to advocate Prime Minister Modi ji’s view that "this is not an era of war”. On the contrary, it is a time for development and co-operation. It is indeed vital that we continue to believe in the promise of diplomacy and that eventually, it is always dialogue and diplomacy, that delivers.

I thank you.

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