India secures UNSC non-permanent membership for 2021-22 with support from Asia-Pacific group including Pakistan and China

In a highly significant diplomatic win for India and a testament to its growing global stature, India's candidature for a non-permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council for a two-year term was unanimously endorsed by the Asia-Pacific group of the world body, including Pakistan and China.

Elections for five non-permanent members of the 15-nation council for the 2021-22 term will be held around June in 2020. "A unanimous step. Asia-Pacific Group UN unanimously endorses India's candidature for a non-permanent seat of the security council for two-year term in 2021-22. Thanks to all 55 members for their support," India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin tweeted on Tuesday.

New Delhi had launched its campaign to win a non-permanent seat at the UNSC for a period of two years at a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) at the capital of Kyrgyzstan in May. During a meeting of the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers in Bishkek, the then External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had said, "(The) SCO must support the member countries' candidatures for the non-permanent membership of the UNSC for the years 2021-2022 and 2027-2028."

Each year the 193-member UN General Assembly (UNGA) elects five non-permanent members for a two-year term at the high-table. The five permanent members of the council are China, France, Russia, UK, and the US. The 10 non-permanent seats are distributed on a regional basis: Five for African and Asian States; one for the Eastern European states; two for the Latin American and Caribbean States; and two for Western European and other States.

Previously, India has been elected as a non-permanent member of the Council for the years 1950–1951, 1967–1968, 1972–1973, 1977–1978, 1984–1985, 1991–1992 and most recently in 2011–2012 under the leadership of former ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri.

Earlier in June, Estonia, Niger, St. Vincent, and the Grenadines, Tunisia and Vietnam were elected to the council for a two-year term beginning January 2020. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is the smallest nation ever to secure a seat. Currently, the 10 non-permanent members are Belgium, Cote d'Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Germany, Indonesia, Kuwait, Peru, Poland, and South Africa.

India has been at the forefront of the years-long effort to reform the security council saying it rightly deserves a place as a permanent member of the council, which, in its current form, does not represent the geopolitical realities of the 21st Century. India's former Permanent Representative to the UN Asoke Kumar Mukerji had previously told PTI that the country will contest the elections for a non-permanent member seat of the security council for the 2021-2022 term.

In October 2010, India secured 187 of the 190 valid votes in the election at the UNGA to win a non-permanent seat at the security council for the term beginning in 2011 and ending in 2012.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Jun 26, 2019 11:41:36 IST