Bangladesh has joined 142 other countries to vote for a resolution at the United Nations General Assembly to condemn Russia's attempted annexation of four Ukrainian areas.
In New York, three-quarters of the 193-member General Assembly - 143 countries - voted on Wednesday in favour of the resolution that called Moscow's move illegal, deepening Russia's international isolation. Bangladesh is one of them.
“We did so because we strongly believe that the purposes and principles of the UN Charter regarding respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, and peaceful settlement of all disputes must be complied universally for everyone, everywhere under all circumstances, without any exception,” Ambassador Muhammad Abdul Muhith, permanent representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations, said in a statement.
“We also believe that the sovereignty and territorial integrity of any country within its internationally recognized borders should be respected.”
Only four countries joined Russia in voting against the resolution - Syria, Nicaragua, North Korea and Belarus. Thirty-five countries abstained from the vote, including Russia's strategic partner China, while the rest did not vote.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Twitter he was "grateful to 143 states that supported historic #UNGA resolution... (Russia's) attempt at annexation is worthless."
“Bangladesh … urges all parties in the conflict to play positive role for de-escalation and resume immediate diplomatic dialogue in order to settle all disputes by peaceful means, and refrain from taking any action that may endanger international peace and security,” Muhith said.
Meanwhile in Brussels, more than 50 Western countries met to pledge more military aid to Ukraine, especially air defence weapons, on the heels of heavy retaliatory strikes this week ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin in response to an explosion on a bridge in Crimea.
Pledges from allies included an announcement by France that it would deliver radar and air defence systems to Ukraine in the coming weeks. Canada said it would provide artillery rounds and winter clothing among other supplies.
At the meeting of the Ukraine Defence Contact Group in Brussels, US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin said Russia's latest attacks laid bare its "malice and cruelty" since invading Ukraine on Feb 24. At least 26 people have been killed since Monday in Russian missile attacks across Ukraine.