UN General Assembly’s Third Committee passed a Russia-proposed resolution condemning attempts to glorify Nazism ideology and denial of German Nazi war crimes. The US, Canada and Ukraine were the only countries to vote against it.
The resolution was passed on Friday by the committee, which is tasked with tackling social and humanitarian issues and human rights abuses, by 115 votes against three, with 55 nations abstaining, Tass news agency reported.
The document voiced concern over the rise of racism-driven crimes around the world and the influence that parties with extremist agendas are gaining.
It called for a universal adoption of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Many nations including the US, the UK, China and India, signed the convention but did not recognize a mechanism resolving individual complaints it establishes, which makes the convention unenforceable in their jurisdictions.
The resolution also decried attempts to whitewash Nazi collaborators by depicting them as fighters of nationalist resistance movements and honoring them as such.
It condemned any form of denial of Nazi war crimes, including the Jewish Holocaust.
Azov battalion soldiers take an oath of allegiance to Ukraine in Kiev's Sophia Square before being sent to the Donbass region. (RIA Novosti / Alexandr Maksimenko)
Russia, which submitted the draft resolution, said it regretted that it could not be adopted anonymously.
“The fact that the US, Canada and Ukraine voted against, while delegations from EU member states abstained in the vote on this draft resolution, which was supported by an overwhelming majority of the UN member states, is extremely regrettable,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
“Ukraine’s position is particularly dispiriting and alarming. One can hardly understand how a country, the people of which suffered their full share of the horrors of Nazism and contributed significantly to our common victory against it, can vote against a resolution condemning its glorification,” the ministry said.
Moscow proposes similar documents to the UN General Assembly annually, but the US and Canada have consistently voted against them. Ukraine is a new nation among the opponents, as in previous years it has abstained.
Kiev’s representative at the session, Andrey Tsymbalyuk, said that while Ukraine did condemn Nazism and neo-Nazism, it could not endorse the Russian resolution, because it suffered not only from Nazism, but also from Stalinism in the past.
“As long as Stalinism and neo-Stalinism are not condemned as strongly as Nazism, neo-Nazism and other forms of hatred, Ukraine would not be able to back this document,” the diplomat said.
The resolution is to be formally adopted by the UN General Assembly as a body in December.
Currently, the largest and most powerful helicopter to have ever entered production is the gargantuan Mi-26 'Halo' of Russian origin, of which many still serve in governmental and commercial roles around the globe. After decades of the 'Halo' being on top, a new record holder is now said to be on the way, with Russia and China joining forces to make it happen.
Cockpit of the highly modernized Mi-26T2, currently the most powerful and largest helicopter in the world.
This new super-heavy lift class chopper was originally thought to be an outgrowth of the existing, all-weather capable and highly modernized Mi-26T2, but now it seems that it will only borrow a few elements from it, and will overwhelmingly be a 'clean sheet' design.
The fresh design approach is due to China's eye popping requirements. According to Russia, they are said to include almost twice the lifting capacity of the already freakishly powerful and huge Mi-26. That would put the new chopper's lifting ability at somewhere around 80,000lbs! In comparison, the CH-53K 'King Stallion,' America's latest heavy lift design, has a total gross weight just slightly above that figure at 88,000lbs.
You heard that right, this new Russian-Chinese super chopper is aiming to be able to lift roughly the equivalent of America's newest heavy-lift chopper in its entirety, at its maximum gross weight. That is one powerful helicopter.
Originally, this new Russian-Chinese design was thought to be an outgrowth of the Mi-26T2, although this is now inaccurate as Chinese performance demands are far outside any existing designs' theoretical capabilities.
The Mi-26 can already haul vehicles that are larger than what can fit even into a C-130 Hercules, including everything from armored personnel carriers to dump trucks. Yet China has had a uniquely large demand for heavy under-slung cargo carrying ability, for both construction and logistical purposes and there has been talk for the last decade or two about how a super-heavy lift helicopter could change the way some structures are built. This is especially true for modular vertical oriented structures that are intended to be built fast and replicated quickly, an area of architecture and construction that China continues to be the leader in.
Just part of the massive cargo hold of the Mi-26T2. The aircraft has been nicknamed the 'flying office building' for a reason.
According to Russian reports, multiple Chinese agencies are part of this new mega-chopper procurement program, including those that deal with emergency management and response. This makes some sense as during a natural disaster, or even a time of conflict, moving massive amounts of supplies quickly will be all that much more critical considering China's massive population.
Mi-26 lifting a stricken CH-47 in Afghanistan:
The only other helicopter ever flown that could lift anything in the weight class that China is looking for was also of Russian origin: the colossal Mil V-12. Only two prototypes were built and test flown in the late 1960s, and the design used a unique parallel/traverse rotor, quad-engine layout. At first, the aircraft almost tore itself apart during testing, but later, the second prototype was seen widely as a successful, although uneconomic design.
The V-12 was built to haul close to close to 100k lbs, although normal missions were thought to see the super-chopper carry about 85,000lbs, with lighter loads being carried over increasingly longer distances.
The V-12 was never put into series production because its intended mission, to deploy ballistic missiles around the vastness of the Russian countryside, was not a priority by the time the design was mature. It is not clear if Russia plans on reviving similar design elements of the V12 program to meet China's high, or should I say heavy, vertical lift aspirations.
A cost has not been publicly assigned to the program, nor has there been word regarding what percentage Russia will share in the costs of developing such an exotic machine. Regardless of the public absence of some details, Russia says this new design requirements will be locked by the first quarter of 2015.