US and Russia clash over responsibility for missile strike

The US and its Western allies have clashed with Russia at the UN Security Council over responsibility for a deadly missile strike in Poland near the Ukrainian border.

N Political Chief Rosemary DiCarlo called the incident “a chilling reminder of the absolute need to prevent further escalation” of the nine-month war in Ukraine.

US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the Council: “This tragedy would never have happened if it hadn’t been for Russia’s needless incursion into Ukraine and its recent missile attacks on Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure.”

Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia countered, accusing Ukraine and Poland of trying to “provoke a direct clash between Russia and NATO.”

The US and Albania last week called for a council update on the situation in Ukraine, and the meeting was dominated by Tuesday’s missile attack in Poland that killed two farm workers.

Mr. Nebenzia pointed to statements by the President of Ukraine and Polish officials that initially suggested Russia was responsible.

The NATO chief and Polish president said on Wednesday there was no indication the attack was a deliberate one and that it was likely a Soviet-era projectile fired by Ukraine when it launched Russian attacks Fended off missiles and drones that destroyed their power grid and hit residential buildings.

Ms DiCarlo told the council it was Russia’s “most intense bombing campaign” since its February 24 invasion of Ukraine and the impact “can only worsen over the coming winter months.”

She reiterated that attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure are prohibited under international law, noting that “heavy fighting” is ongoing in eastern Donetsk and Luhansk, and told council members “there is no end to the war in sight”.

She also warned that “as long as this continues, the risks of a potentially catastrophic spillover remain all too real”.

Ms Thomas-Greenfield called the barrage of more than 90 rockets that rained down on Kyiv and other cities, targeting devastating civilian infrastructure, “a deliberate tactic” by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“He seems to have decided that if he cannot take Ukraine by force, he will try to freeze the country into submission,” she said.

Poland’s Ambassador Krzysztof Szczerski told the Council “these innocent people would not have been killed if there had not been a Russian war against Ukraine”.

And British Ambassador to the UN Barbara Woodward said: “We should be clear that this is a tragedy that undeniably stems from the illegal and unjustified invasion of Russia. And his inhumane attacks on civilians across Ukraine.”

But Mr Nebenzia said he wanted to remind those who blame Russia that what Moscow is calling its “special military operation” would not have been necessary if the Minsk accords followed the upheaval in Ukraine in 2014, that demanded some degree of self-government for the Russians, backed separatist regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in the east, had been met and had not led to an eight-year war.

Addressing the West, Mr. Nebenzia also said there would be no military action “unless you interfered and provided Ukraine with arms and ammunition,” and encouraged Ukraine “under realistic conditions to seek peace instead of theirs.” feverish fantasies about the possibility of stoking victory over Russia, for which the Zelenskyi regime is pointlessly throwing tens of thousands of its soldiers into the meat grinder”.

Referring to the rocket attacks, Mr. Nebenzia said: “If you reacted to the terrorist actions of the Ukrainian special forces against Russia, we would not be forced to carry out precision attacks on infrastructure.”

“But since you are acting as you are acting while the Kiev regime recognizes non-existent military capabilities, we are forced to achieve the goals set for the special military operation by weakening Ukraine’s military potential.”

Ms Woodward strongly disagreed, telling the council: “We have no doubt that Ukraine will prevail in the face of Russian aggression.” US and Russia clash over responsibility for missile strike

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