Council of Europe

Context:

 

  • Russia’s membership in the Council of Europe has been suspended after its invasion of Ukraine.

 

Issue:

 

  • Russia has launched a full-blown attack on Ukraine, with Russian forces entering the Obolon district, which is less than 10 km away from Central Kyiv – the government’s seat of power.

 

Resolution against Russia’s position on Ukraine:

  • India abstained on a US-sponsored UN Security Council resolution that “deplores in the strongest terms” Russia’s “aggression” against Ukraine, with New Delhi saying dialogue is the only answer to settling differences and disputes.
  • The resolution was presented by the US and Albania, and co-sponsored by several other nations.
  • The Council’s resolution reaffirmed its commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders.
  • It demanded that Russia “shall immediately, completely, and unconditionally withdraw all of its military forces from the territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders”.

 

India Abstaining from Vote:

  • India did not endorse the harsh language used in the resolution condemning Russia’s actions. It wants to maintain a balance between the Western bloc led by the US, and Russia, since it has strategic partners on both sides.

 

About the Council of Europe:
  • The Council of Europe is an international organization founded in the wake of World War II to uphold human rights, democracy and the rule of law in Europe.
  • Founded in 1949 (Treaty of London (1949)), it has 46 member states (including all 27 EU members), with a population of approximately 820 million, and operates with an annual budget of approximately 500 million euros.
  • Headquarters: Palace of Europe, Strasbourg, France.

 

Roles and responsibilities:

  • The Council of Europe cannot make binding laws, but it does have the power to enforce select international agreements reached by European states on various topics.

Source The Hindu

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