Africa pushes for reform of UN Security Council

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Addis Ababa, July 2 (IANS) The African Union (AU) has called upon African countries to speak with one voice as an impetus in the continent’s aspiration to get more representation at the UN Security Council.

The call by AU Commission Deputy Chairperson Thomas Kwesi Quartey came as African leaders were expected to adopt proposals for the continent to get two permanent seats at the expanded UN Security Council during their meeting on Monday and Tuesday at the 29th AU summit in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa.

“We have noticed that people are beginning to take Africa seriously because of the African Union,” Quartey was quoted as saying by Xinhua news agency.

“The more Africa is able to put its acts together and the more the continent is able to speak coherently with one voice, the more likely it is that people will be less able to ignore us,” he added.

In 2005, Africa established a united position on UN reform, calling for the inclusion of two permanent and five non-permanent seats for African countries on the reformed UNSC and extension of veto powers (should they remain) to new permanent members.

Africa argued that in 1945, when the UN was being formed, most of Africa was not represented and that in 1963, when the first reform took place, Africa was represented but was not in a particularly strong position.

–IANS

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