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G4 Nations Pitch to Expand UN Security Council Permanent Members

A larger permanent membership will ensure better representation and effective decision making.

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India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin. (Photo: PTI)

G4 Nations, including India, criticised the outdated structure of the UN Security Council and stating that the problem of imbalance of influence can only be corrected if non-permanent members are added to the world body to reflect the current global status.

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In a statement at the informal meeting of the General Assembly on Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council reform on 2 May, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin spoke on behalf of the G4, which includes India, Germany, Japan and Brazil.

We have heard some oft-repeated arguments that expansion in the permanent category would be ‘undemocratic’...in our view, expansion in both categories particularly in the permanent category is essential to reform the Security Council and make it democratic, legitimate, representative, responsive and effective.
Syed Akbaruddin, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador
 United Nation Security Council on Friday, April 29, 2016 at United Nations headquarters. (Rick Bajornas/The United Nations via AP)
United Nation Security Council on Friday, April 29, 2016 at United Nations headquarters. (Rick Bajornas/The United Nations via AP)

UNSC’s Present Structure Not Reflective of Contemporary Realities

Akbaruddin stressed that the Security Council’s present structure is not reflective of the current global scenario and unfit for the purpose. The Council’s structure and composition needs to represent the major shifts in geo-political and economic order

According to Akbaruddin, expansion in only the non-permanent category will not solve the problem. He stressed on the fact that the decision-making process in the Council must be more participative and democratic and expansion in both categories.

A larger permanent membership will ensure enhanced representation and say in the decision making from the regions and members which are currently not represented or under represented compared to their role and input . Furthermore, it would ensure that the decisions taken reflect the interest of broad membership and thus, better implemented.

Pakistan UN Envoy Maleeha Lodhi expressed a contrasting opinion that more permanent members would diminish and not enhance the Council’s democratic credential effectiveness.

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