US Prepares to Reform UN Security Council

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The United States administration proposes to add six additional permanent members to the UN Security Council who would not have the right of veto. The Washington Post, citing sources, reported this. According to them, US President Joe Biden intends to expand the influence of developing countries in the world organization through restructuring. Washington thus wants to "restore confidence" in the UN Security Council amid the war in Ukraine, the newspaper explains. It is not yet clear who exactly could join the renewed Security Council. However, USA had previously advocated Germany, India and Japan as permanent Security Council members, while France and the UK supported this idea, suggesting that Brazil and at least one African country should also be given a permanent seat on the body. US Permanent Representative to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield is consulting with diplomats from the organization’s 193 countries to seek their views on a possible expansion of the Security Council before the annual meeting of world leaders in New York this autumn. Biden, according to The Washington Post, is pushing for reform as Washington "faces serious challenges in building consent in an exceedingly divided world". In September 2022, from the podium of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly, the head of state announced his support for reforming the UNSC to include "permanent representation from Africa". Thomas-Greenfield is now trying "to build consent on a reasonable, credible proposal that can actually be successful and lead to reform", the publication's sources said, with specific proposals still under consideration. The effort, the sources said, is linked to US authorities' plans to reorganize major international bodies, including financial institutions such as the World Bank. UN Security Council reform, according to the newspaper, would require the approval of at least 128 of the 193 member states and, because it would entail changes to the UN Charter, ratification by all permanent members of the Security Council. The paper doubts that the US Congress would be able to approve such changes. There are currently five permanent members of the UN Security Council: Russia, Britain, China, the US and France. Each of these countries has veto power. The 10 geographically elected members have non-permanent status. Earlier Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Russia singled out India and Brazil as worthy candidates for permanent membership of the UN Security Council with mandatory representation of Africa.