Dec. 18 (UPI) -- Russia on Tuesday lashed out against the United Nations for passing a resolution that criticized its militarization of Crimea and the occupation of Ukraine.
Moscow has said the annexation of Crimea in 2014 was a "reunification" with Russia and has recently moved advanced missiles and other weaponry there.
"We regret the latest vote," Russia's Deputy U.N. Ambassador Dmitry Polyansky said of the resolution. "The Kiev regime thus receives new signals that it's allowed everything and all will be forgiven, while Russia will be unconditionally blamed in advance for all its sins and crimes."
The U.N. General Assembly adopted the resolution Monday voicing "grave concern" over the military build up in Crimea and called on Russia to end its "temporary occupation" of Ukrainian territory. The resolution also condemned Russia's building of a bridge connecting the mainland to the annexed Ukrainian peninsula. The U.N. is also demanding that Russia release the Ukrainian sailors and warships seized last month in the Kerch Strait.
The assembly voted 66-19 to approve the resolution.
There were 72 countries that abstained from the vote, which Polyansky called "heartening" because they're not "wanting to have anything to do with the harmful Ukrainian idea." He criticized the "bloc discipline" of the 66 countries that backed the resolution, including NATO and EU member states.
"No matter how many deceitful resolutions are adopted along with your Western sponsors and those who are afraid to cross them, this will not change anything in Crimea or around it," Polyansky said. "The key to solving all regional problems lies in Kiev, or rather -- in Washington where Kiev is controlled."
Before the vote, the General Assembly rejected amendments from Iran and Syria that called for a thorough investigation into the Kerch Strait incident, where Russia boats rammed Ukraine boats and seized them. The amendment also called for both countries to respect each other sovereign borders.