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New draft on UNSC expansion rejected

world Updated: Mar 19, 2008 10:46 IST
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A draft text on the expansion of the UN Security Council was rejected by most of the 50 countries who participated in discussing the proposals, with India saying the paper did not have an "unambiguous" formulation for expansion of the group's permanent membership.

During a closed-door meeting here last night, several developed and developing countries as also small island states said the proposals were unacceptable as a basis for jump-starting negotiations on the thorny issue as they did not include all viewpoints, diplomats said.

India on its part pointed out that the paper does not have the core elements of the position of the Group of Four (G-4) comprising India, Japan, Germany and Brazil or have a "categorical and unambiguous" formulation on expanding the permanent membership of the Council, diplomats said.

India also said the paper does not have a formulation on increasing the representation of developing countries.

The drafters would, therefore, have to substantially revise it before presenting it to the President of the UN General Assembly, who would then start the process of negotiations.

The protracted issue of UNSC reform has been debated by the UN for more than a decade without much progress.

Recently, several countries including India had suggested that instead of a working group discussing the issue endlessly, the Assembly should begin inter-governmental negotiations on the elements put forward by various groups.

For that purpose, it was agreed to draft a paper putting down various options. But several diplomats said the new proposals, prepared by a few West and East European countries and Malaysia, did not meet the requirements.

The paper was, therefore, flawed and hence unacceptable as basis for negotiations, they said.

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