India raises ‘profound concerns’ over war in Ukraine

New Delhi has so far refused to explicitly condemn invasion by Russia, its long-time ally and largest weapons supplier

Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar said the impact of the Ukraine war was being felt worldwide.  Reuters
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India’s Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar has said the trajectory of the Ukraine conflict is a matter of “profound concern” for the international community and human rights violations have “no justification” — but without mentioning Russia by name.

Mr Jaishankar was speaking at a special session on Ukraine at the UN Security Council on Thursday, as world leaders attended the 77th session of the UN General Assembly.

“The future outlook appears even more disturbing. The nuclear issue is a particular anxiety. In a globalised world, the impact of the conflict is being felt even in distant regions,” he said, while referring to shortages of fuel, food grains and fertiliser caused by the war.

More than 14,000 people have been killed and about 13 million have been displaced in the war that broke when Russian forces invaded Ukraine in February, according to the UN.

Russia has been accused of torture, execution and abduction of Ukrainians, charges that it denies.

India has pursued an independent policy on the conflict and has refused to explicitly condemn Russia, its long-time ally and largest weapons supplier.

It has repeatedly said that the crisis should be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue, doing so during a recent meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Uzbekistan.

However, there is “no justification for violation of human rights or of international law”, Mr Jaishankar told the Security Council.

“Where any such acts occur, it is imperative that they are investigated in an objective and independent manner. This was the position we took with regard to the killings in Bucha and this is the position we take even today.”

More than 300 bodies were found in the Kyiv suburb days after Russian forces withdrew from the area in April. Many of the dead had been shot in the back of the head or had their hands tied.

Updated: September 23, 2022, 7:13 AM