UK, France bat for India's permanent seat at UNSC
The United Kingdom (UK) and France have supported India, Japan, and Brazil's candidature as permanent members in an expanded United Nations Security Council (UNSC). According to the UK, this move will assist the UNSC in responding decisively to "threats to international peace and security." Meanwhile, France asserted that there is an obvious need for the "Council to be more representative of today's world."
Why does this story matter?
- Out of the five permanent members of the 15-nation UNSC, France, the UK, Russia, and the US have batted for India to get a permanent seat in the UN body.
- The current two-year term of India as the UNSC's non-permanent member is set to come to an end in December after it presides over the 15-nation Council for the second time in its tenure.
At a UN General Assembly plenary meeting, Nathalie Broadhurst, France's Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, said: "We want the Council to be more representative of today's world in a way that further strengthens its authority and effectiveness." "We must indeed take into account the emergence of new powers...willing and able to assume the responsibility of a permanent presence in the Security Council."
25-member, enlarged Council needed: France
Broadhurst also added that to preserve the UNSC's operational and executive nature, an enlarged 25-member Council is needed. "France supports the candidacy of Germany, Brazil, India, and Japan as permanent members," she stated. "We would also like to see a stronger presence of African countries, including among the permanent members. The remaining seats should be allocated in order to achieve equitable geographical representation."
Support expansion of non-permanent category of membership: UK Ambassador
Meanwhile, the UK's Permanent Representative to the UN, Barbara Woodward, also advocated for Germany, Japan, Brazil, and India's permanent UNSC membership. She said Britain has always batted for the expansion of the UNSC in permanent as well as non-permanent categories. "We also support an expansion of the non-permanent category of membership, taking the Security Council's total membership to somewhere in the mid-twenties," she stated.
Russia backs India at UNSC
Notably, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov also backed India's permanent seat at the UNSC during the 77th UN General Assembly (UNGA) Session in September. While addressing the UNGA session, Lavrov stated that Moscow sees India as a "worthy candidate for permanent membership within the Council."
What is UNSC?
One of the six central bodies of the UN, the UNSC is responsible for ensuring international security and peace, approving any changes to the UN Charter, and suggesting the addition of members to the General Assembly. It can enforce international sanctions, authorize military action, and establish peacekeeping operations. It is the only UN organization with the authority to issue "binding resolutions" on member nations.