May 29, 2024

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Russian diplomat to the United Nations, Boris Bondarev, resigns over Putin's war in Ukraine

Russian diplomat to the United Nations, Boris Bondarev, resigns over Putin’s war in Ukraine

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A diplomat at the Russian mission to the United Nations in Geneva resigned over the war in Ukraine, writing that he had never felt “ashamed” of his country, in a rare public rebuke of the war from within the Russian government.

In a letter circulated to colleagues in Geneva and Posted on LinkedIn with his nameBoris Bondarev, an advisor at the Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations, said he left the civil service on Monday.

In reference to the start date of the invasion, he wrote: “Throughout my twenty years of diplomatic career, I have seen various shifts in our foreign policy, but I have never felt as ashamed of my country as it happened on February 24 of this year,” referring to the start date of the invasion.

“Putin’s war of aggression against Ukraine, and in fact against the entire Western world, is not only a crime against the Ukrainian people, but perhaps also the most serious crime against the people of Russia, with a capital letter Z in the center of all hopes and prospects for a free and prosperous society in our country.”

Contacted by The Associated Press on Monday, Bondarev confirmed He submitted his resignation in a letter addressed to Ambassador Gennady Gatilov. He told the Associated Press he had no plans to leave Geneva.

The letter targets the ministry in which he was working. “I regret to admit that over all these 20 years, the level of lies and unprofessionalism in the work of the State Department has been increasing all the time. However, in recent years, this has become simply disastrous.

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Today’s ministry, he writes, is “not about diplomacy” but “to foment wars, lies and hate.”

Anatoly Chubais, Putin’s special representative for sustainable development, resigned and left Russia in March, but he has not commented publicly on the reasons for his departure.

that Online guide The United Nations in Geneva lists Bondarev as an adviser to the Russian Federation mission. His LinkedIn profile says he specializes in arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation and indicates that he has been in his current position since 2019.

“Boris Bondarev is a hero,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, a Geneva-based NGO, which distributed a copy of the Russian diplomat’s message on Twitter.

“We are now calling on all other Russian diplomats at the United Nations – and around the world – to follow his moral example and resign.”

“This is an incredible letter below from a senior Russian diplomat condemning Putin in unequivocal terms,” Bill Browder, founder of Hermitage Capital and a prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, wrote on Twitter.

“This is the language all Russian officials and oligarchs must use if they have any chance of being kind to the West.”

I studied to be a diplomat and worked as a diplomat for twenty years. “The ministry has become my home and my family,” says Bondarev’s statement. “But I simply can no longer participate in this absolutely useless and needless bloody disgrace.”

Annabelle Timsit in London and Robin Dixon in Riga contributed to this report.