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Statement of Lithuania at the Intergovernmental negotiations on the Security Council reform

Created: 2018.02.02 / Updated: 2018.02.26 16:44

Distinguished Co-Chairs,

I would like to start by congratulating newly appointed co-chairs of the IGN on Security Council Reform, Ambassador Kaha Imnadze of Georgia and Ambassador Lana Zaki Nusseibeh of United Arab Emirates. I commend you and wish you all success in pursuing progress in these ongoing negotiations. I can assure you of Lithuania’s full support and cooperation with a view to achieving meaningful results in this challenging process.

The last year’s session, ably led by Permanent Representatives of Romania and Tunisia, produced the Elements of Commonality and Issues for Further Consideration, for which I would like to thank both co-chairs. Together with the important documents of two preceding sessions, namely, the Framework Document and the Elements of Convergence, they constitute a useful basis for our deliberations in a more focused way.

In your letter as of 17 January, you invited us to reflect on and assess the ongoing intergovernmental negotiation process and comment on the way forward. You encouraged us to engage in a frank dialogue. I couldn’t agree more with you – first, we do need a real dialogue among us, but, secondly, the time has come to put all our effort for delivering concrete results in this process.

Let me remind, the UN General Assembly started formal discussion about reforming the Security Council in 1993. Since 2007 we have debated this topic (and I underline – debated) in the Intergovernmental negotiations but we haven’t been able to reach concrete results. We do support the format of intergovernmental negotiations as the best way to move forward but we can’t afford a luxury in repeating again and again our well-known positions.

We have to shift our attention to deliverables. For that, as many delegations have already stated in this room today, we need to commence real negotiations, based on a concrete text. Focusing our discussion on the specifics would let us narrow down our differences and look for convergences. Therefore, we do believe that text-based negotiations could offer a viable way forward.

I will not repeat Lithuania’s position but would just emphasize that the current structure of the Council no longer reflects today’s geopolitical realities. UNSC has to be representative of the world it is designed to protect.  

We believe that geographic balance should be ensured to reflect the composition of UN membership on the enlarged Council. Any future decisions should not diminish the chances of small states to be represented on the Council.

As a member of the Eastern European regional group, my delegation insists that this group should be allocated one additional non-permanent seat in an expanded Security Council.

In conclusion, allow me to wish you, distinguished Co-chairs, all the success in your efforts to lead a results-oriented negotiation process and seek concrete progress for the sake of making the Security Council more legitimate, more transparent, more representative and more capable to respond to global challenges of today.

I thank you.

New York, February 2, 2018

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