Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva said that the participation of developing countries as permanent members of the United Nations (UN) Security Council is “non-postponable.”
At a luncheon offered in the Itamaraty Palace to the visiting delegation from Gambia, Lula thanked the president of that country, Yahya Jammeh, for his efforts to establish a “convergence” between the proposals defended by the G4 (the group formed by Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan) and the African Union with regard to UN reform.
The two groups want the UN Security Council to be expanded, but they disagree over how many permanent members should have veto rights in the organ.
According to the G4 proposal, Africa would receive two permanent seats on the Council without veto rights and one temporary seat. The African Union, on the other hand, is seeking two permanent seats with veto rights and two temporary seats for African representatives.
The G4 wants the total number of Security Council seats to be increased from 15 to 25. Six of the new members would occupy permanent seats – one for a country of the Americas, one for Europe, and two each for Asia and Africa.
Lula also remarked that the approximation between Brazil and Gambia is “necessary” for the two countries not to miss out on the historic opportunity to strengthen and democratize the United Nations.
“This is the only way we can prepare multilateralism to respond to the demands of a world marked by unequal globalization, the arms race, and the incitation of intolerance,” he observed.
The president of Gambia, Yahya Jammeh, reassured President Lula that his government stands “firmly” behind the aspirations of Brazil and the other G4 countries to reform the United Nations.
Jammeh insisted that, now more than ever, the countries of the South have “better possibilities” of contributing to the reform of the global system.
The Security Council is the UN organ that discusses and decides on matters related to armed conflicts and security around the world. Currently, only the five permanent members – China, the United States, France, the United Kingdom, and Russia – have voting and veto rights on the Council.