India doesn’t even qualify for UNSC membership, Pakistan tells UNGA as it debates reforms

Pakistan told the UN General Assembly again on Monday that India does not even qualify for a seat on the 15-member United Nations Security Council (UNSC), citing New Delhi’s violations of its resolutions on Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

Ambassador Munir Akram reaffirmed Pakistan’s opposition to adding new permanent members in UNSC and attempted to drive the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) astray that India had waged 20 wars since independence and fomented terrorism and instability across the region, especially against Pakistan.

Without naming India, which along with three other countries — Brazil, Germany and Japan (known as G-4) — had been campaigning for permanent membership, Ambassador Akram said that, “We have clear and ample evidence of this state-sponsored terrorism.”

“India stands in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions calling for the final disposal of the disputed State of the Jammu and Kashmir through the exercise of self-determination by the people of the State in a free and fair plebiscite under UN auspices,” the Pakistani diplomat told the 193-member assembly which was debating the Security Council reform aimed at making it more representative, responsive, democratic and transparent — but the progress remains stalled.

He added that India had deployed 900,000 troops to crush the Kashmiri people’s legitimate freedom struggle and committing massive human rights violations. Ambassador Akram said that settlers from outside IIOJK were being brought in to transform the Muslim majority state into a Hindu majority territory.

“India threatens aggression against Pakistan and resorts to daily artillery and small arms fire, targeting innocent civilians on our side of the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir,” the ambassador stated. “This country has no qualification for membership of the Security Council — permanent or even non-permanent,” he maintained.

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 sharply divided over the details.

The G-4 countries had shown no flexibility in their campaign to expand the UNSC by 10 seats, with six additional permanent and four non-permanent members.

On the other hand, the Italy and Pakistan-led Uniting for Consensus (UfC) group firmly opposed any additional permanent members, saying that such a move would not make the Security Council more effective and also undermine the fundamental principle of democracy that is based on periodic elections.

The Security Council was currently composed of five permanent members — Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States — and 10 non-permanent members.

Ambassador Akram further added that UfC’s proposal reflected the most suitable basis for an agreement on comprehensive reform. He added that it was fair and equitable which respected the principle of sovereign equality of states and does not discriminate between them.

“If it is approved, it will obtain the largest possible support in the General Assembly and the essential ratification of all the 5 permanent members of the Security Council,” he said.

The UfC proposal, he added, was also flexible and through variable arrangements, accommodates the aspirations and interests of the majority of the UN membership, including African and other regional groups such as the Arab Group and the OIC.

He pointed out that that UfC looks at Africa’s collective desire for representation differently; its absence was a historical injustice. Africa was seeking a larger number of non-permanent and two empowered permanent seats for the continent.

“The UfC is prepared to explore with the African Group how their regional approach could be adapted to enable all regions to be able to select their own candidates for membership in an expanded Security Council,” the Pakistani envoy added.

Ambassador Akram added that the reform of the Security Council must be part of a broader revival of the multilateral system as it was conceived under the UN charter.

“At the same time, the balance between the Council and the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and other UN organs must be restored to reinvigorate the entire multilateral system,” he said.

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