Pakistan, on Tuesday, challenged India’s qualification for the permanent or non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council (UNSC) in the UN General Assembly.
Addressing the floor of the UN General Assembly, Pakistan’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Munir Akram said that India has been an outright violator of 15-member body resolutions, passed to settle the longstanding dispute of Kashmir.
This is the first instance where Pakistan has challenged India’s qualifications for the membership of the UN Security Council.
India: Violator of UNSC Resolutions
Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN said that India stands accused of massive human rights violations and violating the rights of its minority communities. He highlighted that New Delhi has kept eight million people in the occupied Himalayan valley of Kashmir under curfew for more than 100 days.
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Addressing the 193-member Assembly during the debate on the reforms to be ushered into the UN Security Council, Munir Akram said, “The size and power of a state does not in itself, qualify it for a permanent membership of the Council or other privileges within the United Nations – a United Nations which requires the sovereign equality of all states.”
The Ambassador continued, “At least one of the G-4 does not, in our view, qualify for membership of the Security Council, permanent or non-permanent.”
In February 2009, negotiations began to reform the UN Security Council in five principal areas, including the question of veto, regional representation, categories of membership, and the size of an enlarged security council amongst others. However, member states remain conflicted over the details of enlarging the UNSC.
Reforming the UNSC
Presently, the UNSC consists of five permanent members, including Britain, France, China, Russia and the United States, and 10 non-permanent members.
The Italy-Pakistan Uniting for Consensus (UfC) group staunchly opposes any proposal to add additional permanent members, arguing that it would make the Security Council less effective, alongside defying the principle values of democracy that are focused on periodic elections.
Addressing the floor of the UN General Assembly, Ambassador Munir Akram said that the logic behind the reformation of the UNSC was to make it more effective, accountable, transparent and equal in terms of representation. He argued that the stance adopted by Uniting for Consensus group offers the most pragmatic solution to reach consensus, particularly on the question of equal representation.
The Ambassador added that the G-4 proposal lacks support, arguing that they nominated themselves to represent their representative regions
It puts forward a proposal that does not promote discrimination amongst states and will ensure increased accountability through the process of election and re-election of UNSC members.
Pakistan’s permanent representative argues that the UFC proposal is a realistic solution and if it is approved by the General Assembly, it will secure the ratification of the five permanent UNSC members. He highlighted that Islamabad respects Africa’s collective desire for representation, and remarked that the absence of this representation is a “historical injustice.”
Ambassador Munir Akram stressed that rotation is the ideal strategy to fulfill regional interests, and a regional approach will also aid in obtaining the support of sub-regional groups. The Pakistani envoy added that the Uniting for Consensus proposal for forwards the potential for the long-term representation of states if they are elected by their respective regions.
The Ambassador added that the G-4 proposal lacks support, arguing that they nominated themselves to represent their representative regions. He said, “While decrying that the Security Council is unrepresentative, they seek permanent membership for themselves.”
Munir Akram added, “There have been many occasions in history when the seekers of power and privilege have come forward to declare that they have come not to praise Caesar but to bury him.”