World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


UN Security Council Action on Crimea Referendum Blocked

United Nations Security Council Action on Crimea Referendum Blocked

New York, Mar 15 2014 - Owing to the negative vote of one of its permanent members, the United Nations Security Council today failed to adopt a draft resolution which urged countries not to recognize the results of this weekend's referendum in Crimea.

Thirteen of the Council's 15 members voted in favour of the draft text, Russia voted against, and China abstained. A veto by any of the Council's five permanent members -- China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States -- means a resolution cannot be adopted.

The resolution would have reaffirmed Ukraine's "sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity" and declared that Sunday's referendum which could lead to Crimea's break with Ukraine and union with Russia, "can have no validity".

Speaking ahead of the vote, Russian Permanent Representative to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, said it was "no secret" that Russia was planning to vote against the draft. He added that Moscow would respect the decision of the Crimeans but could not accept the basic assumption of the draft resolution which aimed "to declare illegal the planned March 16 referendum where residents of the Republic of Crimea should decide on their future".

Liu Jieyi, Permanent Representative of China to the UN, said after the vote that Beijing sought a "balanced" solution to the conflict within a framework of law and order. He called for the creation of a coordination group, a support package for Ukraine, and also called on countries to refrain from action which could further escalate the conflict.

Deep disappointment and incredulity was expressed by several Council members, who noted that this was the seventh time the body was convening to discuss the situation in Ukraine.

United States Permanent Representative Samantha Power, whose country sponsored the resolution, said the text was aimed at finding a principled and peaceful solution, and upheld UN principles on the sovereignty of its Member States.

Russia has the power to veto a Security Council resolution, "but it does not have the power to veto the truth," she said.

United Kingdom's Mark Lyall Grant said the result of today's vote highlighted Russia's isolation over Crimea within the Council and from the international community.

Meanwhile, Gérard Araud of France quipped that Russia "vetoed the UN Charter" with its "no" vote.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said that "emotions have been hardened" over the forthcoming referendum.

Addressing journalists Friday at the UN Headquarters in New York, Mr. Ban cautioned against "hasty measures and decisions which may impact the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Ukraine" and stressed that any actions should be in accordance with provisions of the UN Charter.

UN officials, including Mr. Ban, have been appealing to all parties to calm the situation and to engage in direct and constructive dialogue to forge a peaceful way forward in Ukraine, which has been witnessing unrest for several months.

Tensions heightened last week as lawmakers in Crimea, where additional Russian troops and armoured vehicles have recently been deployed, voted to join Russia and to hold a referendum on 16 March to validate the decision.

For more details go to UN News Centre at


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>


Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news