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G-4 Foreign Ministers Meeting on Sidelines of UNGA

  • 28 Sep 2018
  • 6 min read

Foreign ministers of G-4 countries met on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly 73rd session.

  • The G4 Ministers reaffirmed the need for an early reform of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) including the expansion of both permanent and non-permanent categories of membership to enhance its legitimacy, effectiveness, and representativeness.
  • Foreign ministers also expressed support for reflecting the African Common Position as contained in the Ezulwini Consensus.

India and UNSC Membership Reforms

  • Why reforms in UNSC membership are necessary?
    • Current UNSC represents the global order of post-1945. The global order has changed a lot since 1945 and with the rising clout of emerging powers like India and Brazil in the global arena, it is necessary that changes in geopolitics must reflect in the highest council of leaders in the world.
    • Among the permanent members of UNSC
      • Europe is over-represented with the presence of the United Kingdom, Russia and France.
      • Asia is under-represented with only China present.
      • No representation from South America and Africa.
    • Meaningful reform of the UNSC to make it more representative and will strengthen UN to address the challenges of a changing world more effectively.
  • Why India should be given a permanent membership?
    • India is the world’s largest liberal democracy and a country representing almost one-sixth of humanity.
    • India is the world’s fifth largest economy.
    • India is one of the largest contributors to UN peacekeeping mission around the world with more than 100,000 Indian troops having served in U.N. missions during the past 50 years.
    • India has served seven times to the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member, most recently from 2011 to 2012, after receiving 188 of the 190 total votes.
    • India is one of the founding members of the United Nations.
    • India was the signatory of the Declaration by United Nations on 1 January 1942, the declaration by United Nations became the basis of the United Nations (UN), which was formalized in the United Nations Charter signed by 50 countries on 26 June 1945.
    • A seat for India will make the body more representative and democratic. With India as a member, the Council would be a more legitimate and thus a more effective body.

G-4 Nations

  • G-4 nations comprise of Brazil, India, Germany, and Japan.
  • G-4 nations have a common goal of a more representative UN Security Council and they support each other bid for a permanent seat in UNSC.

L.69 Group

  • The L.69 Group is a group of developing countries from Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific.
  • They form a major bloc that is united by the common cause of achieving the lasting and comprehensive reform of the United Nations Security Council.
  • The group currently has 42 countries as its members.

Ezulwini Consensus

  • The Ezulwini Consensus is a position on international relations and reform of the United Nations, agreed by the African Union.
  • It calls for a more representative and democratic Security Council, in which Africa, like all other world regions, is represented.

  • Initiatives taken by India for UNSC membership reforms
    • India has undertaken a series of initiatives, both at bilateral and multilateral levels, in pursuance of permanent membership in an expanded and reformed UN Security Council.
    • G-4 Nations
      • India is working with like-minded countries like Brazil, Germany, and Japan who also aspire for a reformed UNSC.
    • L.69 Grouping
      • India is also working with L.69 Grouping for a reformed UNSC.
    • India is also actively engaged in the ongoing Intergovernmental Negotiations on UNSC reform at the United Nations.
    • Since September 2016, India has been participating in the meetings of the "Group of Friends on Security Council Reform” which supports urgent reform of the UN Security Council including an expansion in both permanent and non-permanent categories of membership.
  • Supporters to India bid
    • India's bid for the permanent member of UNSC is now backed by four of the five permanent members, namely France, Russia, United Kingdom, and the United States.
    • China has not openly supported India’s bid for UNSC membership.
    • Other countries that have officially endorsed India's bid for UNSC membership includes all the members of African Union and countries like Norway, Sweden, Australia, Peru etc.
  • Opposition to India’s membership
    • Pakistan has been very vocal against India’s inclusion in the UNSC as a permanent member.
    • The group of Countries called as “Uniting for Consensus” grouping (UfC) are strongly against G-4’s bid for permanent membership of UNSC.
    • UfC includes Italy, Pakistan, Mexico, Egypt, Argentina, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, and Indonesia.
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