UN Security Council set to hold emergency session on downing of Russian plane Thursday

:The U.N, Security Council is set to hold an emergency meeting Thursday afternoon at the request of Russia, which has accused Ukraine of shooting down a Russian military transport plane near the Ukrainian border yesterday.

The French presidency of the Council said in a statement that “the meeting requested by Russia” will take place on Thursday at 5:00 pm (03 am PST Friday).

But Russia’s Deputy Ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, lashed out on his X account (formerly Twitter) on Wednesday, saying that France, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency, refused to convene a meeting for Wednesday afternoon, as Russia had requested, “in a clear attempt to shield their Kiev regime clients.”

This delay, according to the Russian envoy, gives the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelesnky, “more time to come to its senses and invent some at least distantly plausible explanation of what it has committed.”

The Il-76 crashed about 50 kilometers from the Ukrainian border after explosions were heard in the air, according to eyewitnesses quoted by Russian agencies.

According to Moscow, 65 Ukrainian prisoners were ready for exchange for Russian prisoners, and three Russian guards and the crew died.

Images of the Il-76 crashing to earth at high speed and exploding in an open field have appeared on social media accounts from Belgorod.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at the UN on Wednesday morning that Ukraine first boasted about shooting down the plane in a digital publication, but then pulled down the publication, something he said confirmed Ukrainian authorship of the downing, even if it was by mistake.

The Russian diplomat Polyanskiy claimed that France was abusing its functions as president of the Security Council by not acting with urgency, saying it was “deplorable that glorious in the old days, French diplomacy has shrunk to miserable swindling and pathetic manipulations.”