UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan has formally submitted to the UN mechanism working to expand the UN Security Council the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s demand to ensure “adequate representation” of its member states in the 15-member body.
The request was made by Ambassador Munir Akram, who is also the co-chairman of the 57-member OIC group at the UN, during an intervention in the long-running Inter-Governmental Negotiations (IGN) aimed at reforming the Security Council to make it more effective, representative and accountable.
In this regard, the Pakistani envoy said he would be transmitting to the co-chairmen of the IGN process the resolution adopted by last month’s OIC Conference of Foreign Ministers, held in Islamabad, that unanimously demanded “adequate representation” of OIC member states in a restructured Security Council.
The co-chairmen are: Qatar’s Ambassador Alya Ahmed Saif Al-Thani and Denmark’s Ambassador Martin Bille Hermann.
The resolution, entitled, “Reform of the United Nations and expansion of Security Council’s membership”, stressed that ‘any reform of the Security Council must ensure adequate representation of the OIC Member States in any category of membership in an expanded Security Council.
It emphasizes that the OIC’s demand for adequate representation in the Security Council is in keeping with the significant demographic and political weight of the OIC Member States, which bears particular importance, not only from the perspective of increased efficiency, but also to ensure the representation of the main forms of civilization in that body.
“I would, therefore, urge co-chairs that in their common elements paper, a reference should be added not only to the Smaller Island Developing States (SIDS) but also to the OIC Member States,” Ambassador Akram added.
Full-scale negotiations to reform the Security Council began in the General Assembly in February 2009 on five key areas — the categories of membership, the question of veto, regional representation, size of an enlarged Security Council, and working methods of the council and its relationship with the General Assembly.
Despite a general agreement on enlarging the Council, as part of the UN reform process, member states remain divided over the details.
Progress towards restructuring the Security Council remains blocked as India, Brazil, Germany and Japan, known as G-4, continue to push for permanent seats in the Council, while the Italy/Pakistan-led Uniting for Consensus (UfC) group firmly opposes any additional permanent members.
The Security Council is currently composed of five permanent members — Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States — and 10 non-permanent members elected to two-year terms.