Mexico formally proposes to establish a peace committee for Ukraine to the UN Security Council | International

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Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard speaks during a high-level meeting of the United Nations Security Council, in New York, on September 22, 2022.AMR ALFIKY (REUTERS)

Mexico, a non-permanent member of the Security Council, has formally proposed this Thursday the establishment of an international peace commission to try to end the war in Ukraine. Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard raised the proposal, which President Andrés Manuel López Obrador had already announced last week, during his speech at the extraordinary meeting of the Security Council called to address the situation after Russia had further aggravated tensions by announcing annexation referendums in occupied territories.

In the committee, according to the Mexican vision, world leaders of recognized prestige would participate. Specifically, Ebrard directly mentioned the names of two very different leaders: that of the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, and that of Pope Francis, as López Obrador had already proposed when launching his proposal in his speech on Independence Day in Mexico. The body he proposes, he argued, would strengthen the UN’s mediation efforts in the crisis that began when Russia invaded his neighboring country last February.

“The objective would be very clear, to generate new mechanisms for dialogue and create complementary spaces for mediation, which foster trust, reduce tension and open the way to a lasting peace”, declared Ebrard in his speech, in which he highlighted on various occasions, Mexico’s willingness to play a constructive role in bringing to an end a conflict that has already cost the lives of thousands of Ukrainians and has displaced more than six million people.

The Mexican head of Foreign Relations also insisted on the need to reinforce humanitarian assistance to those affected, something “unavoidable and a priority.” Those responsible for possible war crimes must also answer for their actions, he stressed, recalling that accountability is a “fundamental pillar” of international law and UN principles.

In the speech in which he launched the proposal to form a peace committee, López Obrador had pointed out that this body should begin to act quickly to immediately achieve a cessation of hostilities and the beginning of direct negotiations between the leaders of the two countries at war, the Russian Vladimir Putin and the Ukrainian Volodímir Zelensky.

Until now, India has maintained a position of neutrality in the war in Ukraine. New Delhi maintains excellent ties with Moscow and has abstained on votes to condemn Russia in the Security Council and General Assembly. But he has also launched constant calls for an end to the war.

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And last week, Modi was unusually critical of Putin. At a bilateral meeting in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, during the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit, he personally insisted to the Russian president that the war must end. “The present time is not a time of wars. We have talked about it several times on the phone, that democracy, diplomacy and dialogue encompass the whole world”, the prime minister pointed out. Some words that this Thursday evoked the Minister of Foreign Affairs, S Jaishankar, who spoke immediately after his Mexican counterpart.

Pope Francis, the second of the leaders Mexico would like to see on his commission, has explicitly criticized the war and Putin.

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