Ukraine requests ‘urgent’ Human Rights Council debate: UN

Kyiv on Thursday asked the UN Human Rights Council to hold an urgent debate on human rights in Ukraine « stemming from the Russian aggression », the United Nations said.

Jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has accused Vladimir Putin of using the invasion to cover up corruption while standing trial from a Moscow prison.

In a video published by independent news outlet Dozhd, Navalny is heard expressing his opposition to the invasion of Ukraine.

Wearing a prison uniform, he says it would lead to a « huge number of victims, destroyed futures and the continuation of this line of impoverishment of the citizens of Russia ».Quote Message: This war between Russia and Ukraine was unleashed to cover up the theft from Russian citizens and divert their attention from problems that exist inside the country. from Alexei Navalny

This war between Russia and Ukraine was unleashed to cover up the theft from Russian citizens and divert their attention from problems that exist inside the country.Alexei Navalny

Navalny has been jailed for over a year on old fraud charges, after surviving a poison attack, which he and the West say was carried out by the Kremlin.

He is being tried inside the maximum security prison on new charges that could see his imprisonment extended by a decade.

The President of the Human Rights Council received a letter from Ukraine’s ambassador to the UN office in Geneva, requesting the debate « as urgently as possible » during a session several weeks long to start next week in the Swiss city, it said in a statement.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is to attend that session on Tuesday.

The council’s bureau would meet to discuss Ukraine’s request on Friday, it said.

The human rights body’s 47 member states will have to decide whether or not to hold the debate.

The matter is likely to go to a vote as Russia is a member, as are the four other permanent members of the UN Security Council, China, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

The European Union has already signalled its support for such a debate.

« We condemn in the strongest possible terms Russia’s unprecedented military aggression against #Ukraine, » the EU office in Geneva tweeted.

« We fully support the request by (Ukraine) for an urgent debate. »

World Opinions – agencies

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