Russian Diplomat Resigns Over ‘Aggressive War’ on Ukraine

A 20-year veteran Russian diplomat resigned on May 23 over his country’s invasion of Ukraine, in a rare public protest by a Russian official.

Boris Bondarev, a counselor at the Russian permanent mission to the United Nations in Geneva, announced his resignation and condemned what he described as an “aggressive war” in a public statement on LinkedIn.

“Never have I been so ashamed of my country,” Bondarev wrote in the post.

“The aggressive war unleashed by Putin against Ukraine, and in fact against the entire Western world, is not only a crime against the Ukrainian people, but also, perhaps, the most serious crime against the people of Russia, with a bold letter Z crossing out all hopes and prospects for a prosperous free society in our country,” Bondarev said.

Russian wartime censorship laws prohibit calling the Russian aggression on Ukraine as a “war,” referring to it instead as a “special military operation.”

Bondarev criticized the Russian Foreign Ministry for being complicit in the war.

“Today, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not about diplomacy. It is all about warmongering, lies, and hatred. It serves the interests of few, the very few people thus contributing to further isolation and degradation of my country. Russia no longer has allies, and there is no one to blame but its reckless and ill-conceived policy,” Bondarev said.

Bondarev named Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as “a good illustration of the degradation of this system.”

Bondarev became the highest-level diplomat yet to publicly resign from the Russian Foreign Ministry over the war.

In a telephone interview with The Guardian, Bondarev said the decision to resign was “very simple.”

“The decision was made on February 24. But it took some time to gather some resolve to make it,” Bondarev told the British news outlet.

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