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Principles driving the global system are being challenged: Blinken

Allowing Russia to wage war against Ukraine with impunity would be a message to "would be aggressors" everywhere that they may be able to get away with it too, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Friday in presence of his counterparts from India, Japan and Australia. Blinken, speaking at the Raisina Dialogue, also said the even countries beyond Europe are working to support Ukraine knowing the severity of the challenge and its possible implications in the future. “The principles that underlie the entire international system that are necessary for trying to keep peace, the stability that grew out of two world wars are being challenged, being aggressed along with Ukraine,” he said. “And part of the reason that countries way beyond Europe are also so focused on this and are working to support Ukraine and deal with the challenge is because they know it could have an effect here,” Blinken said.

Later, in a joint statement, the Quad leaders also reiterated their support to the principles of freedom, rule of law, sovereignty and territorial integrity, peaceful settlement of disputes and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific region. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar chaired the Quad Foreign Ministers meeting in New Delhi.Jaishankar said the Quad is offering more choices. “We do collectively offer something different,” he said. The leaders also reaffirmed their support to the region through practical cooperation on contemporary challenges such as health security, climate change,  clean energy transition, critical and emerging technologies, infrastructure, connectivity, maritime security and counter-terrorism.Over the Ukraine-Russia conflict, the statement said, there is need for a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in Ukraine in accordance with international law, including the UN Charter. The leaders also emphasised that the rules-based international order must respect sovereignty, territorial integrity, transparency and peaceful resolution of disputes.

The Quad  Foreign Minister also condemned the launch of yet another intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on February 16, 2023 and said it is in violation of UN Security Council resolutions (UNSCRS). The leaders said Quad countries are committed to the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula and urge North Korea to comply with its obligations under UNSCRS. The Foreign Ministers also raised concerns over the use of emerging and evolving technologies such as unmanned aerial systems in the terrorsim activities.

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