Joe Biden calls on the United Nations to defend Ukraine against Russian aggression

In a powerful address to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, U.S. President Joe Biden passionately appealed to world leaders to stand firmly with Ukraine against Russian invaders. His words resonated both on the global stage and within the domestic political landscape as he sought to rally support for Ukraine’s ongoing struggle against a nearly 19-month-old Russian invasion.

“Russia believes that the world will grow weary and allow it to brutalise Ukraine without consequence,” President Biden declared during his speech at the 78th General Assembly. “If we allow Ukraine to be carved up, is the independence of any nation secure?”

The president’s speech drew applause as he pledged unwavering support from the United States and its allies for Ukraine’s fight for freedom. He emphasised that Russia alone bore the responsibility for the ongoing conflict and possessed the power to end it immediately.

Biden’s address served as the centerpiece event of his three-day visit to New York, where he engaged in meetings with leaders from five Central Asian nations, Israel, and Brazil.

This call for international solidarity comes at a time when former President Donald Trump’s isolationist influence has cast a shadow over Washington’s commitment to traditional allies like NATO. House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy, a prominent Republican figure, has raised doubts about the continued provision of billions of dollars in weaponry to Ukraine.

In his address, President Biden argued that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 and its subsequent occupation of Ukrainian territory clearly violated the founding principles of the U.N. Charter, particularly the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Biden’s remarks echoed those of U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who described Russia’s invasion as a “nexus of horror” in his opening speech to the UNGA.

Apart from focusing on the Ukraine crisis, President Biden and U.S. officials also emphasised mobilising resources for infrastructure and sustainable development and combatting climate change during their discussions at the U.N.

Notably, the majority of Americans supported providing weaponry to Ukraine in defence against Russia and believed that such aid demonstrated a commitment to safeguarding U.S. interests and allies.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who attended and applauded Biden’s remarks ahead of his own speech at the UNGA, was expected to visit the White House later in the week, where the United States would unveil a new military aid package for Ukraine. Congress had been asked to approve billions of dollars in additional security assistance for the remainder of the year.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan expressed confidence in bipartisan support for these measures, underscoring the importance of standing up to aggression and defending Ukraine’s sovereignty.

After his U.N. address, President Biden planned to discuss global hotspots with Secretary-General Guterres. Furthermore, he was scheduled to participate in a historic summit with the presidents of five Central Asian nations, followed by meetings with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Sullivan stated that the discussions with Prime Minister Netanyahu would encompass regional stability and strategies for countering and deterring Iran.

President Joe Biden’s address to the U.N. General Assembly underscored the urgent need for international unity in defense of Ukraine against Russian aggression. His unequivocal message sought to reassert the United States’ role as a global leader and guardian of democratic values. 

Among the five founding, permanent Security Council members, only U.S. President Joe Biden addressed the 78th Session of the U.N. General Assembly in New York City, this week. The leaders of the four others veto-wielding, permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — Britain, France, Russia and China are not showing up this year raising a lot of questions in political and diplomatic circles.

Written by Olivier Noudjalbaye Dedingar, USA Correspondent.

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Olivier Noudjalbaye Dedingar

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