India stays off Russia bio vote in UNSC
India on Wednesday abstained from a vote in the UNSC on a Russia-sponsored resolution to establish a commission to investigate its allegations that the US and Ukraine are conducting military biological activities in Ukrainian laboratories in violation of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC), 1972.
With only China supporting Russia on this resolution in the United Nations Security Council, it was defeated with the US, UK and France voting against it and all other non-permanent members abstaining.
Explaining India’s vote, counsellor at the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations, A. Amarnath, said: “Any matter relating to the obligations under the BWC should be addressed as per the provisions of the Convention and through consultations and cooperation between the relevant parties.”
He added: “India emphasises the full and effective implementation of Article 10 of the Convention and underlines that biological related activities for peaceful purposes that are fully consistent with the Convention’s obligations should not be undermined.”
Russia has for sometime now been maintaining that Ukrainian laboratories were being used by the US department of defence to develop biological weapons. Even prior to the beginning of the conflict with Ukraine, Russia has alleged that some erstwhile Soviet republics were being used by the US to develop bio-weapons.
India on Thursday confirmed that external affairs minister S. Jaishankar would travel to Moscow next week for a bilateral engagement with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov. This will be Jaishankar’s first visit to Russia after the conflict with Ukraine started. Moscow had announced this visit last week
itself. Jaishankar will also meet deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation and minister of trade and industry, Denis Manturov.