UN General Assembly convenes emergency special session on Ukraine

The United Nations General Assembly has begun debate on a draft resolution to renew its call for the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine, ahead of the one-year anniversary of Moscow's invasion.

The 193-member General Assembly convened an emergency special session at the UN headquarters in New York on Wednesday.

At the onset, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called the invasion "a violation of the United Nations Charter and international law."

He said, "It is having dramatic humanitarian and human rights consequences."

The UN chief went on to say, "War is not the solution," and "Genuine, lasting peace must be based on the UN charter and international law."

The draft jointly proposed by European nations, the United States, Japan and other countries states that "no territorial acquisition resulting from the threat or use of force shall be recognized as legal."

It stresses the need to achieve lasting peace for Ukraine as soon as possible.

The document also calls on Russian forces to withdraw from Ukraine immediately and unconditionally, as well as to halt attacks on the country's critical infrastructure and civilian facilities, including schools and hospitals.

Later on Thursday, Japan's Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa is scheduled to attend the meeting and deliver a speech.

The General Assembly is expected to vote on the draft resolution on Thursday after representatives of about 80 countries deliver speeches during the two-day session.