Russia introduces UN resolution calling for end to violence in Ukraine
Russia introduced a UN Security Council resolution that strongly urges an immediate end to all violence in Ukraine and the launching of a national dialogue involving all political forces and regions.
The draft resolution, circulated on Thursday to council members, calls on all parties to immediately implement a "road map" to peace put forward by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe on May 12.
Russia's UN ambassador, Vitaly Churkin, said the draft superseded a text he circulated on June 2 demanding an immediate halt to deadly clashes in eastern Ukraine that has languished.
Western diplomats have insisted that any UN resolution reaffirm Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, a critical issue following Russia's invasion and annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula that the United States and the European Union refuse to recognise.
Like the June 2 draft, the newly proposed Russian resolution does not mention Ukraine's sovereignty or territorial integrity, which makes its approval by the Security Council highly unlikely. Churkin said there was only a brief discussion of the text, with support from some council members and suggestions from others. He said council experts would meet to go over the text "to try to accomplish this very quickly".
The draft expresses deep concern at the intensification of hostilities and killing of civilians in eastern Ukraine, where government forces have battled pro-Russian rebels for two months.