CUTS International Washington DC Center
Monthly Brief #47, February 2022
Take All Necessary Measures to Restore International Peace and Security
Eastern Europe is engulfed in the fog of war. The Russian Federation has attacked Ukraine to ensure that it will not join NATO and place missiles on its territory aimed at Russia. One side of the story is that such a promise was made in a tripartite meeting between USA, Ukraine and Russia. It has been reiterated since long. However, this does not give a right to Russia to attack Ukraine.
The reverberations of this are being felt around the world. The situation is dynamic, and it is difficult to foretell how the next few weeks will play out. However, two things are urgently required. First, global efforts to ensure there is no unintended escalation of the present armed conflict into a wider theatre. Second, reaffirmation of the inviolability of sovereignty and territorial integrity of all States.
The United States has ruled out a boots on the ground presence in Ukraine. This is as per its new policy to not act as the global cop. NATO is prepared to take measures which are “preventive, proportionate and non-escalatory.” Russia’s actions have led to a shift in European military policy, with major powers like Germany committing to supplying arms to aid Ukrainians in their resistance efforts, as well as boosting domestic military spending. Crippling sanctions have been authorised against the Russian economy, targeting individuals and cutting off Russian access to financial markets.
In the first week of the armed conflict, there are already allegations of grave breaches of international humanitarian law, including the targeting of non-combatants and military action against civilian infrastructure. Ukraine has instituted proceedings at the International Court of Justice under the Genocide Convention, contesting the basis of Russia’s claims alleging genocide in Ukrainian territory as a pretext for invasion.
On the diplomatic front, the UN has appointed a Crisis Coordinator for Ukraine to coordinate UN humanitarian response efforts. Over 300,000 Ukrainians have already been displaced due to the conflict. At the UN, Russia has already vetoed any potential Security Council action on Ukraine, while the General Assembly is holding a meeting on the crisis at the time of writing.
India continues to walk a tightrope on the conflict. Along with China and UAE, it abstained from voting on the draft Security Council resolution deploring Russia’s aggression as a violation of the UN Charter, as well as on a Council procedural vote calling for a special emergency session of the General Assembly. In any event, Russia had already vetoed the resolution. However, the Indian Prime Minister has called for an “an immediate cessation of violence and a return to dialogue” in his conversation with the Ukrainian President.
Last month, we asked whether India can preserve its strategic autonomy and safeguard its interests from this conflict’s fallout. As the armed conflict rages, the stakes have got significantly higher. The question now is not only of deft diplomatic maneuvering, but also of concerted efforts to restore and maintain international peace and security.                                         
Pradeep S. Mehta

P.S.: This year, India will celebrate 75 years of diplomatic ties with various countries. How has Indian diplomacy evolved in these 75 years, and what shape will the next 25 years of Indian diplomacy take?

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This is the forty-seventh edition of the Monthly Brief from the Center, which carries select published news or comments on a relevant issue. There are equally important issues which may have been missed out to keep the Monthly Brief short and swiftly readable.

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US climate envoy warns geopolitics may risk hurting climate efforts
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India doesn't have to fall in line with either the east or the west
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The China-US geo-tech competition: State of play 2022
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India finally taking some steps to leverage AI for military applications
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Digital assets await enabling legal framework
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Diaspora: A living bridge between India and US
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India-US partnership for post-pandemic world
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Defence, trade and people-to-people links are key elements of India-Australia ties
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Sri Lanka to host BIMSTEC summit 2022 on March 30
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