Russia has been accused of overseeing ‘the largest instance of state-sponsored kidnapping of children in modern history’.
Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba levelled the charge at the United Nations Security Council, where 141 member states voted for a UN resolution demanding Moscow’s withdrawal.
He told the session, marking the anniversary of the invasion: ‘The goal of the plan is to get Russia out of Ukraine and make the world a safer place.’
Antonio Guterres, UN secretary general, said that 12 months on from the launch of Vladimir Putin’s war, ‘life is a living hell for the people of Ukraine’.
But Mr Kuleba remained defiant, declaring: ‘Dear members of the Council, Ukraine will resist, as it has done so far. And Ukraine will win.
‘Putin is going to lose much sooner than he thinks.’
He went on to warn Russian troops they will eventually end up in front of a Nuremberg-style tribunal having to explain their terrible actions.
Reflecting on the year-long invasion, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told the Council: ‘When President Putin couldn’t break the Ukrainian military, he intensified efforts to break Ukrainian spirit.
‘Over the last year, Russia has killed tens of thousands of Ukrainian men, women and children, uprooted more than 13 million people from their homes, destroyed more than half of the country’s energy grid, bombed more than 700 hospitals, 2,600 schools and abducted at least 6,000 Ukrainian children – some as young as four months old – and relocated them to Russia.
‘And yet, the spirit of the Ukrainians remains unbroken. If anything, it is stronger than ever.’
Speaking simultaneously at a news conference, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky insisted ‘victory is inevitable’ if all their allies ‘do their homework’.
‘I really want every single partner to remain strong, to remain united for our victory, because that is going to be a victory of values,’ he added.
‘I am confident that we will have this victory soon. We have everything to have it this year.’
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