New York: India, Brazil, Germany and Japan, collectively known as the G4 group of countries, have made a joint bid for the expansion of the UN Security Council in both the permanent and non-permanent categories of membership.
Each of these countries aspires to be a permanent member of the United Nations and play a larger global role. They made the joint bid at the informal plenary of the intergovernmental negotiations at the UN General Assembly on Thursday.
"This Council should be expanded in both the permanent and non-permanent categories of membership, taking into consideration the contributions made by countries to the maintenance of international peace and security, as well as the need for increased representation of developing countries in both categories," they said in a joint statement.
"On numerous occasions, we have reconfirmed our view that Africa should be represented in the permanent membership in an enlarged Council," the group reaffirmed saying, “it was fully supportive of the intergovernmental negotiations”.
G4 said their "straightforward" proposal "focuses on two aspects of Security Council reform, namely expansion in both permanent and non-permanent categories and improving the working methods of the Council. Nothing more, nothing less."
Noting that there had been limited progress on the issue, the group said: "We believe that our proposal can generate the momentum needed to kick-start real negotiations”.
"Some call this 'piecemeal' or 'cherry-picking'. We call it a realistic and results-driven approach. Let us agree on what most Member States agree on and let us then tackle the other issues," it added.
The G4 initiative has garnered wide cross-regional support with nearly 80 members having expressed their support in writing, in addition to a substantial number of strong commitments, it noted seeking "real negotiations" on this "all-important matter”.
The UN reform issue has been hanging fire for years as the 193 member countries are unable to reach a consensus on how it should be done and who are to be the new members representing each continent.
First Published: Friday, January 27, 2012, 11:04