External affairs minister SM Krishna is expected to arrive in New York on February 10 to participate in sittings of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
He will also be leading India’s negotiations on reforms relating to the Council, for which, a shorter negotiating document was circulated among UN member states on Tuesday morning.
The principal meet, which the minister will attend at the UNSC, will be discussions convened by Brazil, which will assume presidency of the Council during February. But, during his brief visit to New York, the minister will also be focused on the new negotiating document, which provides a roadmap for larger reforms of the UNSC.
The new text was sent by Afghanistan’s Permanent Representative to the UNSC Zahir Tanin, who is chairing the intergovernmental panel on UNSC reforms.
The principal issue addressed is that of categories of membership and options have been put forth.
The first is “enlargement in both current categories, permanent and non-permanent two-year seats, with all the prerogatives and privileges of current permanent members.”
While this may be the most difficult compromise to secure, other options include expansion with the new permanent members not exercising the right to veto “until decided upon in review” after several year.
The third looks at an intermediate solution, with the addition of a third category of seats where members could be elected to the Council for periods of 12 years.
Outlier options on the table include those for enlargement in the non-permanent category alone and even abolition of the permanent category of membership of the UNSC.