New Delhi, Feb 25 (PTI) Russia on Friday said it expects support from India at the UN Security Council when the global body takes up a crucial resolution on the Russian military operation in Ukraine.
Russia's Charge d'affaires Roman Babushkin said India has a deep understanding of the reasons that led to the current situation in Ukraine and Moscow is looking for continued support from New Delhi in sync with the special and privileged strategic partnership between the two countries.
The UN Security Council is scheduled to vote on Friday evening on a draft resolution on Russia's military operation in Ukraine as well as the escalating situation in the eastern European country.
"We highly appreciate India's deep understanding of the current situation as well as the reasons that led to it. We expect India to support Russia at the UN Security Council," Babushkin told PTI.
The draft resolution is set to condemn in the strongest terms Russia's military operation in Ukraine that has triggered strong outrage among the Western powers.
Appreciating India's position, the Russian diplomat also referred to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar's comments three days back in Paris that the situation in Ukraine has its roots in the post-Soviet politics and the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
"India's position has been very balanced and independent. We appreciate it and we continue to expect India's support in sync with the special and privileged strategic partnership between the two countries," Babushkin said.
When asked at a media briefing on Thursday about India's position on the draft UN Security Council resolution on the Ukraine crisis, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said India has seen it and that New Delhi's stand will depend on the final shape of its text.
"I am told that it would undergo considerable changes. We will wait to see the shape that the resolution takes before we can pronounce ourselves and the position that we will take on the issue," the foreign secretary said.
The Russian Charge d'affaires said Russia has been in constant touch with India over the latest developments relating to Ukraine.
"We are maintaining all communication with India and it has a proper understanding of the overall situation," he said.
In the midst of the escalating situation in Ukraine, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a telephonic conversation with President Vladimir Putin on Thursday during which he appealed for ending violence, and called for concerted efforts from all sides to return to the path of diplomatic dialogue.
A Russian readout said Putin outlined the fundamental assessments of Ukraine's "aggressive actions" against the civilian population of Donbas as well as the many years of "destructive policy" aimed at breaking the Minsk agreements.
Jaishankar too held a phone conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov and underlined that dialogue and diplomacy are the best way forward to deal with the crisis.
Babushkin said the Western powers and the current Ukrainian government were responsible for the Russian action against Ukraine as they never heeded to Russia's security concerns as well as legitimate interests of the people of Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People's Republic (LNR) in Ukraine. PTI MPB PYK