UN’s Response to the Russian Invasion of Ukraine.
March 31, 2022
On February 24, 2022, the world was taken aback. Russia had begun invading one of their Western neighbors, Ukraine. Since the start of the invasion, the news has been blowing up about it. A military invasion like this has not happened since WW2; this has caused thousands of people to flee their homes. So, after all this, you may be thinking, what is the United Nations’ response to this?
For those who might not know, the United Nations (UN for short) is an organization created after WW2 to help keep peace and promote cooperation with other countries. An organization like this must have the power to stop Russia, right? Well, it is not that simple.
Whenever huge things are happening that brings trouble to other nations, the UN takes a vote on whether or not to take action. On March 15, 2022, a vote was set up to try and prevent war. At the UN General Assembly (UNGA), 141 countries voted against Russia and their violent offense against Ukraine. Unfortunately, the UN Security Council (UNSC) was unable to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine because of one vote from Russia. “No.”
Russia is part of the P5, which are the permanent members of the UN. The other four countries in this group consist of France, China, the United Kingdom, and the United States. These countries have a lot of power within the UN. Because of this power, a single “no” from Russia was able to stop the UN from taking the Russian military out of Ukraine. Power like this has caused a lot of controversy with the P5 because people think the five of those nations shouldn’t have this kind of power.
And this isn’t the first time Russia has tried to stop the UN from taking action during this invasion either. On February 25, 2022, the UN took a vote about removing the Russian military from Ukraine, and, just like they would later do again, Russia vetoed the resolution.
The U.S. Ambassador, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, put it best about the veto according to AP News, “Not surprisingly, Russia exercised its veto power today in an effort to protect Russia’s premeditated, unprovoked, unjustified, and unconscionable war in Ukraine. But let me make one thing clear: Russia, you can veto this resolution, but you cannot veto our voices. You cannot veto the truth. You cannot veto our principles. You cannot veto the Ukrainian people.”
As much as the UN might want to help Ukraine, as long as Russia has the power to veto votes and resolutions in the UN and UNGA, the UN will be unable to assist the people suffering because of the invasion.