German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced the need to reform the UN, as well as Germany's readiness to join the enlarged Security Council of the organization.
The politician noted that the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic became one of the examples showing that solving global problems requires cooperation at the supranational level.
The work of the UN can only be effective if its members are united.
Merkel cited the situation in Libya and Syria as another example of an intractable problem.
“However, the Security Council too often finds itself in a stalemate when it is required to make clear decisions.
We need reforms.
The United Nations must continue to evolve to meet the global challenges of the 21st century.
Germany is fully determined to continue to assume responsibility and would be happy to act in an expanded Security Council, ”the FRG Chancellor emphasized.
© Michel Kappeler / Pool
Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi made a similar statement in his message on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the UN.
According to the minister, over the past 75 years since the founding of the UN, the world has changed, and the crises overtaking humanity are becoming more widespread.
In this context, the role of the UN is more important than ever.
At the same time, the organization needs reforming, Tokyo is convinced.
“To make the UN more effective, Security Council reform can no longer be postponed.
It is with regret that I have to state that today the system developed 75 years ago does not fully meet the purposes of the Charter, ”Toshimitsu Motegi emphasized.
The Minister is convinced that Member States that are able and willing to take on key responsibilities should be represented in the expanded Security Council.
“Only then will the Council be able to revive as an effective representative body.
Japan is fully prepared to fulfill the relevant responsibilities as a permanent member of the Security Council and to contribute to ensuring peace and stability in the world, ”said the head of the Japanese Foreign Ministry.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also called for reforming the UN Security Council in his speech.
He noted that the UN system is not capable of preventing new conflicts, nor putting an end to those wars that have already begun.
According to the Turkish leader, it is impossible to overcome today's challenges with the help of structures created for the needs of the last century.
“To re-energize the United Nations system, we must first reform the Security Council.
The Security Council, due to the structure of which the fate of seven billion people depends on five countries, is neither fair nor reliable, "Erdogan said.
He added that creating a democratic, transparent, accountable, efficient and fair representation configuration of the Council is not a matter of choice, but a necessity for humanity.
Attempts at reform
Calls for UN reform have been heard for a long time.
For the first time, the issue of expanding the composition of the UN Security Council was included in the agenda of the 34th session of the UN General Assembly in 1979.
During the 48th session of the General Assembly in 1993, it was decided to establish an open-ended working group to consider the issue of expanding the membership of the Security Council, as well as other issues related to the UN Security Council.
As a result of the work of this group in 1998, the UN General Assembly approved resolution 53/30.
According to the document, resolutions and decisions on representation in the UN Security Council and the expansion of its membership cannot be adopted unless at least two-thirds of the General Assembly votes for it.
US Representative Signs UN Charter at San Francisco Conference
© United Nations Photo
This is not the first time Germany has declared its aspiration for membership in the UN Security Council.
Earlier, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder showed great activity in this direction, who managed to create, together with Japan, India and Brazil, the G4 group, whose goal was to reform the Security Council.
Earlier, Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as well as leaders of other member states of the United Nations, spoke about the need to change the work of the UN.
So, the issue of reforming the UN was discussed in 2018 during the meeting of the General Assembly of the organization.
Then, most countries supported the expansion of the Security Council, and Brazil, India, Japan and Germany declared their desire to obtain permanent membership in the Security Council.
Commenting earlier on the initiatives to reform the UN Security Council, the press secretary of the Russian president Dmitry Peskov stated that any changes in the work of this structure can be adopted only following a consensus among the current permanent members of the Security Council.
In his video message, sounded at the plenary session of the 75th anniversary of the UN General Assembly, Russian President Vladimir Putin noted that with all the intricacies of world politics, the UN is adequately fulfilling its main mission of saving the world.
At the same time, the changes taking place in the world have an impact on the UN Security Council and on the discussion on its reform, the Russian leader added.
“Our logic is that the Security Council should take into account more fully the interests of all countries, all the diversity of their positions, based on the principle of the broadest consent of states, but at the same time, as before, serve as a key link in the global governance system, which cannot be ensured without preserving the right to veto permanent members of the Security Council, "Putin said.
The Russian President explained that this right of the five nuclear powers that won the Second World War reflects today the real military-political balance.
According to the Russian leader, the veto power of the permanent members of the UN Security Council is "an absolutely necessary and unique tool that does not allow unilateral actions fraught with direct military clashes between the largest states."
At the same time, like any international organization, the UN "should not stiffen, but should reflect in its development the dynamics of the 21st century" in order to adapt to modern realities, Putin said.
Chase the changing world
According to Andrey Manoilo, Doctor of Political Science, member of the Scientific Council of the Russian Security Council, the criticism that the UN has been exposed to lately is due precisely to the fact that the organization does not always have time to adapt to changing conditions.
“Over the past 30 years, the UN has been criticized for its slowness and inability to respond to and prevent modern armed conflicts.
And the discussion on reforming the UN does not stop, because the world has changed long ago.
But at the same time, it is still not clear how exactly the organization should be reformed.
It is possible that in the future the composition of the permanent members of the UN Security Council will indeed be expanded and Germany and Japan will have the opportunity to join it, "the expert noted in a commentary on RT.
According to Manoilo, now there are countries that no less than five permanent members of the Security Council influence the situation in the international arena.
“Whether these countries should be included in the permanent members of the UN Security Council or should they simply be given broader powers within the framework of the non-permanent members of the organization is a debatable issue.
Undoubtedly, reforms can have both positive and negative consequences.
Now international relations are in an imbalanced state, so the UN reform can lead to disaster, ”added Manoilo.
Boris Mezhuev, a political scientist and associate professor of the Philosophy Faculty of Moscow State University, adheres to a somewhat different point of view.
As the expert noted in an interview with RT, if Germany or Japan become permanent members of the UN Security Council, this will raise a lot of questions from other countries, such as India, Indonesia.
the created world order will begin to collapse, initiatives to abolish the very club of permanent members of the UN Security Council will begin to expand.
And for Russia, China and the United States, this is unacceptable.
A rather dangerous situation will arise, ”the expert is sure.
At the same time, the UN really needs reforms, since 75 years have passed since its creation, added Boris Mezhuev.
However, change can easily lead to the destruction of the organization itself.
“In spite of everything, for the time being, to maintain the existing world order, maintaining the status quo is a necessary condition,” the expert added.
It should be noted that criticism of the UN is also heard from the American leadership, despite the fact that the United States is a permanent member of the organization's Security Council.
The incumbent head of the White House, Donald Trump, reproached the UN for its inefficiency even during the 2016 election campaign.
“The UN has great potential, but now it's just a club where people can get together, chat and have a good time.
It `s so sad!"
- then Trump wrote on his Twitter.
In 2018, the United States withdrew from the UN Human Rights Council.
Before that, the White House actively criticized the structure for its position on the Israeli issue, which is at variance with the approach of the current American administration.
© Kevin Lamarque / Pool
According to experts, it is common for Washington to count on the coincidence of its own interests with the position of the UN.
For example, on September 19, 2020, the head of the State Department, Mike Pompeo, made a statement in which he "welcomed" the restoration of previously canceled UN sanctions against Iran.
The reason for this, according to the American side, should have been a notification of Tehran's “non-fulfillment” of its obligations under the JCPOA, which the United States had previously submitted to the UN Security Council.
However, the State Department hastened with the announcement of anti-Iranian sanctions: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres announced that he could not proceed with the return of restrictions.
This was stated in Guterres' letter to the President of the UN Security Council.
Guterres noted that such a decision was not supported by the Security Council, most of its participants opposed the American initiative.
In turn, commenting on the statement of the State Department, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called on the American leadership to "stop speaking on behalf of the UN Security Council" on the topic of anti-Iranian sanctions.
Speaking about the role and prospects of reforming the UN, experts remind that it was Washington and NATO that more than once acted bypassing the Security Council, violating the organization's charter.
A striking example was the bombing by the North Atlantic Alliance of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999.
The UN Security Council did not give permission for this invasion at that time, and Moscow and Beijing, permanent members of the Security Council, were categorically opposed to the actions of the alliance.
According to Andrei Manoilo, Washington has for a long time carried out conscious activities aimed at undermining the authority of the UN.
Therefore, today, along with the issue of reforming the organization, it would be appropriate to raise the issue of preventing its current members from undermining its foundations.
Bombing of Yugoslavia
“At the same time, despite everything, the UN remains an operating structure,” the expert added.
Boris Mezhuev adheres to a similar point of view in this regard.
“Undoubtedly, the United States undermined the authority of the UN by its actions, another example was the invasion of Iraq.
The result of such a policy of Washington was the transformation of the UN from an analogue of an arbitrator into a discussion club, where each side expresses its opinion, and then does what it wants.
Therefore, first of all, the question should be raised not about the expansion of the UN, but about the fact that the current members of the Security Council do not act bypassing the organization, ”the expert summed up.