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Indian High Court judge Dalveer Bhandari votes against Russia for invading Ukraine

War in Ukraine: Indian ICJ judge Dalveer Bhandari votes against Russia

New Delhi:

The UN High Court ordered Russia to suspend its invasion of Ukraine on Tuesday, saying Moscow was “very concerned” about the use of force. “The Russian Federation will immediately suspend military operations in Ukraine on February 24,” pending a final ruling in the case, Judge President Joan Donoghue told the International Court of Justice or ICJ.

“The court is very concerned about the use of force by the Russian Federation, which is causing very serious problems in international law,” Judge Donoghue said in a statement in The Hague.

Kiev has taken Moscow to the UN Supreme Court following Russia’s February 24 attack.

Indian Judge Dalveer Bhandari of the ICJ also voted against Russia.

Judge Bhandari was appointed to the ICJ with the full support of the government and various missions for a period of time.

Judge Bhandari’s vote against Russia, despite being an independent movement based on the interpretation of the Russia-Ukraine case, is different from India’s official position in various international fora.

India has abstained from voting on the Ukraine-Russia issue at the UN and has instead called on both sides to focus on negotiations and end enemies.

Ukraine accuses Russia of trying to justify its war by falsely denouncing genocide in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions of Ukraine. Kiev then called on the ICJ to take interim measures, urging Russia to “immediately suspend military operations.”

“Russia needs to be stopped, and the court has a role to play in stopping that,” Ukrainian President Anton Korynevich told the ICJ last week.

Wednesday’s hearing put the number of refugees fleeing Ukraine at more than three million, and Russian forces have stepped up strikes on residential buildings in Kiev.

At the same time, Kyiv said it wanted its security to be guaranteed by international forces, as it rejected proposals pushed by Russia to take on a neutral status similar to that of Austria or Sweden.

Russia rejected the hearings on March 7 and 8, arguing in a letter that the ICJ “did not have jurisdiction” because Kiev’s request based its case on falling outside the scope of the 1948 Genocide Agreement.

Moscow also justified its use of force in Ukraine, saying it was “acting in self-defense.”

But the ICJ ruled that it had jurisdiction over the case, and Judge Donoghue stated that the ICJ currently “has no evidence to prove that the Russian Federation committed genocide in Ukrainian territory.”

With contributions from AFP

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