In a recent interview, the High Commissioner of the United Kingdom, Alex Ellis, said that the country ‘certainly’ supports India’s candidature for a permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
India held the Presidentship of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the month of December 2022. As a growing world power, India has established itself as an reputed member of the United Nations. The world is looking at India and is hopeful that it will enable changes for the betterment of the world. Even the reason High Commissioner Alex gave for supporting India’s candidature was that he believes that the country’s push for reforms will help the UN to better deal with the realities of the present times.
Which other countries are supporting India?
Not only the United Kingdom, but even France and the U.A.E have come for in support of India’s candidature as a permanent member of the UNSC. As per France and the U.K. the UNSC should be more representative. The G-4: – Germany, Brazil, India and Japan are also supporting each other to get a permanent seat in the Security Council.
India’s chances to get the seat seem to be stronger now that it is presiding over the G-20 as President. According to some reports, its chances of getting a seat are 26%, 11% for Japan, and 9% for Brazil. However, 64% of the respondents to this poll deny any additions or changes to the P5 (Permanent 5) until 2033. If India is able to capitalize on this presidency, there is a possibility that it will get more support from around the world to get a permanent seat in the strongest body of the UN.
China is the only country that has not supported this candidacy.
There is also a request to extend the membership of the Security Council. In the recent past, the United Kingdom has proposed to increase the number of seats of the UNSC, including the number of permanent seats in the Council.
Is it possible to make changes in the P5?
The United Nations Security Council is composed of 5 permanent members: – the United States of American (U.S.A.), the United Kingdom (U.K.), France, Russia and China. It also has 10 non-permanent members which keep changing and are elected for a term of two years.
Although there has been no change in the composition of the Council since 1946, it is possible. As per Article 108 of the United Nations Charter, an amendment is possible, as is one to the composition of the Security Council.
To make any amendments, two-third members of the General Assembly must adopt the amendments and they must be ratified by two-third members of the United Nations, including the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.
Why any amendment regarding the membership of permanent members has not been possible because usually if any of the permanent members are not in support of including a country as a permanent member, or see it as a threat to their power, they can use their ‘veto’ power to reject any such changes.
The “veto” is a power possessed by only the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council that allows them to refuse to approve anything they do not agree with. The use of the ‘veto’ means that whatever the issue, the Council cannot move forward with it.