Russia Tells U.N. It Is Being 'Emotional' for Decrying Ukraine Invasion

Russia's ambassador to the United Nations has accused the U.N. Security Council of being "dogmatic" and "emotional" with regards to Moscow's recognition of breakaway republics in eastern Ukraine.

Vasily Nebenzya lambasted the organization's diplomats at an emergency meeting on the Ukraine crisis held by the U.N. Security Council (UNSC), of which Russia ironically holds the rotating chair.

Monday's meeting took place hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized the independence of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics (DPR and LPR).

Nebenzya suggested the onus was on the West to ease tensions in the region as world leaders weigh up sanctions against Moscow, which has ordered troops to enter Ukraine in what it says is a "peacekeeping" operation.

Nebenzya said: "We have just heard some emotional statements, dogmatic assessments and far-reaching conclusions" about Putin's decrees which he insisted did not come out of the blue.

"The LPR and DPR declared independence from Ukraine back in 2014, but we recognized it only today," he said as he revisited Moscow's claims that Kyiv-backed forces were behind the spike in tensions in the Donbass.

"I call on our Western colleagues to come to their senses, put aside emotions and not make things worse," he said. "No one but you can deter Kyiv's militarist plans and make it stop shelling and provocations" against the breakaway republics.

He said that Russia's recognition of the republics made no difference to the 2015 Minsk agreements aimed at ending hostilities, which he accused Ukraine of trying to "sabotage."

In announcing the Biden administration would prohibit investment and financing in the breakaway republics, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield accused Putin of wanting the world "to travel back in a time when empires ruled the world."

"This move by President Putin is clearly the basis for Russia's attempt to create a pretext for a further invasion of Ukraine," she said, "we do not have to guess at President Putin's motives." Media outlets have shown footage of Russian military vehicles on the outskirts of the city of Donetsk.

Political analysis firm R.Politik said on Monday that it was notable that Putin had urged Kyiv to start negotiations with the DPR and LPR, which until now it had refused to do.

"The position of Ukraine, which refuses to negotiate with the DPR and LPR, is understandable but in the current conditions... a certain window may appear," R.Politik said on its Telegram channel. "Kyiv may unexpectedly declare that it is ready for such negotiations for the sake of peace."

Meanwhile, Ukraine's Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov said Putin's move showed that the Kremlin "has taken another step towards the revival of the Soviet Union. With the new Warsaw Pact and the new Berlin Wall."

"Our choice is very simple," he said, "to defend our country, our home, our relatives. Nothing has changed for us."

Russian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin during an address at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21, 2022. That day, Russia's UN ambassador accused the west of being "emotional" over Putin's recognition of two breakaway republics in Ukraine. ALEXEY NIKOLSKY/Getty