Pakistan Calls for Reforms as UN Security Council Fails to Halt Palestinians’ Slaughter

Fri Nov 17 2023
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UNITED NATIONS: Against the backdrop of the UN Security Council’s failure to halt the slaughter of Palestinians, Pakistan has called for reforms to enhance the Council’s representativeness, transparency, and accountability for global peace and security.

Addressing the UN General Assembly’s debate on Security Council reforms, Pakistan’s Ambassador Munir Akram highlighted the Council’s inability to effectively intervene in the ongoing conflict in Gaza.

Ambassador Munir Akram expressed concern over the month-long conflict in Gaza, accusing Israel of committing war crimes and genocide against innocent Palestinians. He attributed the frequent failures of the Security Council to respond decisively to conflicts to the inability of its permanent members to reach a consensus on crucial actions.

Ambassador Akram rejected the idea of adding new permanent members to an enlarged Council, emphasizing that such an expansion could lead to increased paralysis. He stated that the Uniting for Consensus (UfC) group, led by Italy and Pakistan, remains opposed to creating additional permanent seats in the Security Council. Instead, he suggested that countries aspiring for a more frequent presence should subject themselves to periodic elections by the General Assembly.

The Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) on Security Council reform, initiated in 2009, have faced obstacles, primarily in areas such as membership categories, veto power, regional representation, the size of an enlarged Security Council, and working methods.

Despite general agreement on enlarging the Council, member states, including the Group of Four (India, Brazil, Germany, and Japan) advocating for permanent seats, and the UfC group opposing them, remain divided over the issue. 

Pakistan Proposes New Non-Permanent Seats of UN Security Council

Ambassador Akram proposed the UfC’s alternative of adding 11-12 new non-permanent seats to provide greater representation to smaller states. He argued that this approach would balance the influence of the five permanent members and ensure accountability through periodic elections, contributing to the democratization of the United Nations.

Addressing the African demand for two permanent seats, Ambassador Akram differentiated it from the G-4’s quest, stating that African seats would be accountable to and selected by Africa, fostering regional responsibility. He cautioned that no reform model could be developed until member states reconcile key divergences within the five clusters of issues.

Ambassador Akram urged that Council reform discussions should exclusively take place within the intergovernmental negotiations process, warning against duplication at future summits. Many delegates echoed the need for a more inclusive and representative Security Council, with some advocating for limitations on the use of the veto.


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