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U.N. Votes Reveal a Lot About Global Opinion on the War in Ukraine

U.N. Votes Reveal a Lot About Global Opinion on the War in Ukraine
A screens displays the results of a vote on a resolution regarding the war in Ukraine at United Nations headquarters, March 24, 2022 (AP photo by Seth Wenig).

This Thursday, the United Nations General Assembly will vote on a resolution marking the first anniversary of Russia’s all-out assault on Ukraine and calling on Moscow to end the war. Western Diplomats expect at least two-thirds of the General Assembly’s 193 members to support the initiative. Last March, 141 states—including the majority of countries from Africa, Asia and Latin America—backed a resolution condemning Russia’s actions. In the fall, 143 voted to reject Russian President Vladimir Putin’s attempt to annex Ukrainian territory. Absent a significant surprise, a similar majority should throw their weight behind this latest resolution.

While the resolution is very unlikely to affect Russia’s actions on the battlefield, it will allow Ukraine to demonstrate that it still enjoys broad international support for its struggle. As the war has ground on, and as Russia and Ukraine have competed for support in the non-Western world, these General Assembly votes have become a useful barometer of global views of the conflict.

From the first weeks of the war onward, the International Crisis Group’s U.N. team has parsed and mapped the U.N. voting data to understand these global perspectives. What have we learned?

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