ACTING PF president Given Lubinda says government’s decision to vote in favour of the United Nations resolution to condemn Russia is another example of the UPND administration’s flawed foreign policy.
In a statement, Tuesday, Lubinda stated that government should have consulted citizens before voting because the decision had the potential to harm the interests of the nation.
“The Patriotic Front (PF) Party has been following with keen interest the war between neighbours Russia and Ukraine in Europe. We regret the loss of lives and damage to property. Our position is that our party remains resolute and committed to finding a lasting solution to this complex and delicate situation being fueled by the United States and its NATO allies. We are of the view that the Zambian government should have consulted citizens before voting in favour of the United Nations resolution condemning Russia. This is yet another example of the United Party for National Development (UPND) government’s seriously flawed foreign policy, which has the potential to harm the interests of our nation,” he stated.
“In the UN resolution, 141 countries voted in favour of condemning Russia, five against and 35 abstained from taking any side. Historically, Zambia has been a member of the Non-aligned Nations on matters of international conflict involving competing interests between the West and East blocs. We are therefore disappointed that the UPND government sided with Western interests to condemn Russia without consulting Zambians through their elected representatives in Parliament. This smacks of arrogance. The PF shares a mutually beneficial relationship with the ruling All-Russian Party (United Russia) and shall remain steadfast and optimistic in calling for an end to the conflict.”
Lubinda stated it was important for all interested parties, including Zambia, to understand the nature of the conflict and join efforts to end it.
“We believe that it is important for all interested parties, including Zambia, to understand the complicated and delicate nature of this conflict and join efforts to end it and restore peace in Europe and the rest of the world. The world should hear both sides. Russia has appealed to the global community to understand the reasons for its military operation in Ukraine, which include demilitarisation and denazification of its neighbour for the safety and security of the Russian people. It has reminded the world that since Ukraine declared independence it had remained non-aligned until the western-backed coup in 1914 after which it has been pushing to join the Western military alliance, the Northern Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), which has declared Russia as its adversary. This, if actuated, would directly threaten Russia’s security as it shares a long border with Ukraine,” stated Lubinda.
“The West turned down Russia’s requests for security guarantees of non-expansion of NATO to Russia’s borders and started mass deliveries of lethal weapons to the Ukrainian government, encouraging the activities of nationalist anti-Russian and armed groups and foreign mercenaries. All these factors must be considered when adopting a position on this conflict.”