UN vote on Russia-Ukraine conflict: General Assembly voting results, who abstained and which countries opposed

No fewer than 141 nations have backed the UN General Assembly vote demanding Russia withdraws from Ukraine

The UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to demand that Russia immediately stops using force against Ukraine.

It wants Russia to withdraw its military from the country, with 141 nations backing the motion.

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Only five, including alleged co-aggressor Belarus, opposed it.

It comes days after the UN Security Council proposed a draft resolution instructing Moscow to stop the attack and withdraw all troops immediately.

The results of a General Assembly vote on a resolution is shown on a screen during a special session of the General Assembly at the United Nations headquarters.

What happened during the UN General Assembly vote?

The vote saw 141 countries back the motion, with 35 abstaining and five against.

Belarus, which has been labelled a co-aggressor in the invasion, voted against the reprimand, as did North Korea, Eritrea and Syria, while 35 nations abstained.

China and India were among those who abstained, but the reprimand was backed by nations ranging from world powers to tiny island states, showing the wide-reaching outrage at Moscow’s attack.

Britain had been lobbying behind the scenes for nations to back the motion, which deplored Russian “aggression” in the “strongest terms” and demanded the total withdrawal of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s forces.

Resolutions of the General Assembly are not legally binding but carry political weight by showing the strength of international feeling and the result further diplomatically isolates Russia at the UN.

Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary General said: “The message of the General Assembly is loud & clear: End hostilities in Ukraine — now. Silence the guns — now. Open the door to dialogue & diplomacy — now.”

The results of a General Assembly vote on a resolution is shown on a screen during a special session of the General Assembly at the United Nations headquarters.

What has Boris Johnson said about UN vote?

Boris Johnson said “rarely has the contrast between right and wrong been so stark” after a UN General Assembly motion condemning Russia’s invasion was overwhelmingly backed.

The Prime Minister said: “We are united in our abhorrence to the evil actions of Putin’s regime and stand side-by-side on the international stage as we deplore its aggression in the strongest possible terms.

“Rarely has the contrast between right and wrong been so stark. 141 countries voted to condemn Putin’s war.

“Along with my almost daily conversations with President Volodymyr Zelensky, I have engaged world leaders in our joint mission to denounce Russia’s actions and make clear – for the sake of innocent civilians – Russia should withdraw from Ukraine and Putin must fail.

“We are – and will continue to be – unified in our resounding admiration for the courage and bravery of President Volodymyr Zelensky and the Ukrainian people”.

What did President Zelensky say on UN vote?

Taking to Twitter after the vote he said he praised the approval by the General Assembly, saying: “I’m grateful to everyone & every state that voted in favour. You have chosen the right side of history.”

He also said: “The world is with us. The truth is on our side. Victory will be ours!”

What happened with the draft motion vote last week?

Led by the US and Albania, the resolution “deplored” Russian aggression in Ukraine.

The original wording was “condemned”, but this was watered-down only hours before the motion was put to a vote in the hope of gaining more support.

As well as calling for an end to the invasion, it also called on Russia to reverse a decision to recognise two separatist areas in eastern Ukraine as independent.

It was defeated by Russia – as one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, it has an overall veto power. Therefore, even with 11 votes in favour, 3 abstentions, and only 1 vote against, the motion did not pass.

India, China, and the United Arab Emirates all abstained.

France, Britain, US, Albania, Brazil, Gabon, Ghana, Ireland, Kenya, Mexico, and Norway all voted in favour of the motion.

The five permanent members of the UN Security Council (all of whom have an overall veto power on any proposed resolution) are China, Russia, France, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The remaining ten members serve two-year terms, and are elected on a regional basis. The presidency of the UN security council rotates monthly. The current president of the UN security council is the Russian representative; in March, it will be the representative from the United Arab Emirates.

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