69th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
“Rather than start a complete renovation, we want to fix the plumbing ...”
Ambassador Paul Seger of Switzerland Explains Key Goals and Strategies of the ACT Group
An Interview with Lydia Swart, 11 June 2015
The ACT Group was launched in May 2013 by 21 countries aiming to reform the working methods of the Security Council. Focusing on the current Council, ACT’s efforts take place outside the Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) on Security Council reform, where the complex expansion debate dominates the discourse. The Center talked to ACT - Accountability, Coherence, and Transparency - on two of its priorities for this year: improving the appointment process of the UN Secretary General and veto restraint. Similar efforts are promoted by the Elders and the “1 for 7 Billion” campaign, among others.
The Chair Advances Security Council Reform, but Substantial and Procedural Complexities Persist
By Lydia Swart, 29 May 2015
On 13 May 2015, an update of the Populated Framework Document was distributed to Member States, immediately followed by two days of surprisingly interactive meetings on 14 and 15 May. Pointed questions were raised about groupings and positions, and some - but far from all - were immediately addressed. The framework document indicates that with a few exceptions, stated positions have not significantly changed during the last few years. In most of the submissions, support for specific expansion models remains qualified in ways that cannot easily be reconciled. The notion of a comprehensive framework resolution emerging and succeeding anytime soon seems quite unrealistic.
'Populated Framework Document' on Security Council Reform
11 May 2015
A new text of 22 pages was distributed on 5 May 2015 and benefited from the input of around 115 countries. The exact number is unclear because the membership of L69 overlaps with that of Africa, CARICOM and the G4. There are no significant shifts in stated positions from Africa or the G4 since the 2005 World Summit. The Arab Group, UfC, China, Russian Federation and the USA communicated with the chair without using the one-page framework document as a template and their substantive positions are not reflected in the new text. Their communications also raised procedural issues, as did an earlier letter of UfC, to which the Chair responded. Meetings on the populated framework document are scheduled for 14 and 15 May 2015.
Chair Presents Framework Document on Security Council Reform
26 March 2015
Member States have been asked to provide their input by 16 April 2015 in order to create a new negotiation text. Some Member States have queried the timeline and would like more information on how the Chair, Ambassador E. Courtenay Rattray, intends to arrange and merge submitted positions during phase 3. During similar efforts from 2009 to 2010, Member States ended up disagreeing about two different revisions of the text and on ways to streamline it from 30 pages into a shorter and more operational text. The Chair believes he has the "executive authority" to create a concise text.
Changing the Composition of the Security Council: Is There a Viable Solution?
1 March 2015
In this opinion piece, Lydia Swart, CURE's expert on Security Council reform, and Cile Pace address many of the most commonly asked questions about this reform issue. Read the complete text online, or download the PDF version.
Security Council Reform: How to Arrive at a More Operational Text?
17 February 2015
On 11 and 12 February 2015, an impressive number of Member States provided input on how they would like the slow-going negotiations on Security Council reform to proceed, with most statements focussing on the notion of text-based negotiations. However, during this meeting, no obvious agreement seems to have emerged on what kind of text the Chair should produce. Should it be a text in the form of a draft resolution, or a somewhat shortened version of previous texts and new information received?
Security Council Update
2015: Similar Scenarios, Same Positions, New Outcomes?
12 January 2015
The Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) on reforming the Security Council (SC) have not led to any significant results on SC expansion since the IGN officially began in 2009. Procedural maneuvering by those who oppose adding new permanent seats is often blamed for this vexing standstill. However, sufficient political will to compromise among some of the key players may be equally, if not more, responsible for the lack of progress. And while the main focus has been on changing the composition of the Council to make it more representative of contemporary realities, efforts to make the Council more accountable, effective, and transparent are of equal or greater importance to a large section of UN Member States.
Open Debate on Security Council Working Methods
On the 23rd of October, the Security Council held an open debate on working methods. More than forty member states addressed topics ranging from initiatives to ensure due process under UN sanctions regimes, to a Security Council mechanism for follow-up on referrals to the International Criminal Court, to the use of the veto power and the selection process for the UN Secretary-General.
69th Session of the UN General Assembly: The General Debate and UN Reform
The need to reform the United Nations and in particular the UN Security Council was raised throughout the General Debate this year. Many delegations seemed to feel that the upcoming 70th anniversary of the UN in 2015 provided an opportunity to push forward on the reform agenda and evaluate the way forward for the Organization.
68th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Draft Oral Decision on Security Council Reform
4 September 2014. On 7 September, Member States are expected to adopt a decision to continue the negotiations in the 69th session. The draft circulated by PGA Ashe resembles previous decisions and does not push for the Chair's recommendations of July 2014.
The Chair's Assessment on Security Council Reform Negotiations
On 9 July 2014, Ambassador Zahir Tanin's summary of the latest round of meetings was distributed, as well as his recommendations on how to move the process along.
Is there Momentum for Security Council Reform? What are the Obstacles?
Update, 31 May 2014
The Advisory Group's Non-Paper: Will it Facilitate Security Council reform?
On 12 and 16 December 2013, an informal meeting of the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council reform took place, with the Non-Paper faxed to Member States just a few days earlier.
On 21 November 2013, the General Assembly Reacted to the Security Council's Annual Report (A/68/2)
The Annual Report of the Council was again discussed - independently from the general Security Council reform debate - as promoted by ACT.
Creation of Advisory Group on Security Council Reform to Provide Basis for Negotiations Unsurprisingly Meets Opposition
by Lydia Swart, 10 November 2013
Update on Security Council Reform: Creation of PGA’s Advisory Group and joint plenary meeting held on 7 and 8 November 2013
CURE's latest publication on Security Council Reform: Governing and Managing Change at the United Nations: Reform of the Security Council from 1945 to September 2013
67th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
A New Low Point in the Security Council Reform Process: Serious Clashes between the President of the General Assembly and the Chair
On 27 June 2013, the President of the General Assembly, Vuk Jeremic, rather than the Negotiations Chair, Zahir Tanin, presided over a meeting of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council Reform, highlighting an ongoing disagreement between the two about how and when to proceed during the current session.
21 Member States Launch ACT, a New Initiative for Better Working Methods of the UN Security Council
by William Pace, 12 May 2013
On Thursday, 2 May 2013, ACT (Accountability, Coherence, and Transparency) officially launched its initiative for better working methods of the Security Council. This initiative is a follow up to the multi-year efforts from the S5, in particular in regard to its draft resolution L.42 Rev.2 from May 2012.
Chapter 1b on Security Council Reform: September 2007-May 2013
7 May 2013
The Center is in the process of updating its 2008 publication "Managing Change at the United Nations." Chapter 1b on Security Council Reform: September 2007-May 2013 is now available online.. The publication is intended to serve as a resource for academics, media, NGOs, and newly arrived diplomats.
No Strong Support for Drafting of Concise Working Document: Chair Proposes to Put Negotiations on "Strategic Hold."
Updated 7 May 2013
On 16 and 17 April 2013, Member States discussed ways on how to proceed with the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform, reacting to the proposals made by the Chair in July 2012. The Chair of the negotiations, Amb.Zahir Tanin of Afghanistan, believes that without a working document that could lead to actual give-and-take negotiations, it might be better to "put the negotiations on strategic hold."
21 countries to present their thinking on "Better Working Methods for today's UN Security Council" on 2 May 2013.
Draft Resolutions on Security Council Reform: Growing Convergence among Developing Countries?
By Lydia Swart, 4 March 2013
Includes draft resolutions from L69 (2012) and CARICOM (2013)
Update on Security Council Reform: Another impasse?
By Lydia Swart, 1 February 2013
An update on Security Council reform efforts from July 2012 - 30 January 2013
66th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Letter of the Chair of the Intergovernmental Negotiations on SC Reform outlines negotiations thus far and possible ways to move the process along
By Lydia Swart
On 25 July 2012, Amb. Zahir Tanin, in his capacity as Chair of the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council reform, wrote a letter to the President of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, in which he provided an overview of the intergovernmental negotiations to date while also outlining possible ways to move the process along, including a concise working document to be drafted by the Chair. It is noteworthy that in spite of this bold move, Amb. Tanin was reappointed by the President of the General Assembly's 67th session as Chair of the negotiations.
Report on Security Council Reform Meeting 13 March 2012
By Kirsten Schlosser
4 May 2012
On 13 March 2012 the fourth meeting of the eighth round of Intergovernmental Negotiations was held on Security Council reform. This meeting was devoted to the reform initiative of the L.69 Group, presented by the Member State Jamaica. This summary is based on statements given by Member States at the meeting.
The S5 presents draft resolution on the Improvement the Working Methods of the Security Council
By Mie Hansen 10 April 2012
On 4 April 2012 the S5 (Jordan, Liechtenstein, Costa Rica, Singapore and Switzerland) presented a draft resolution on improving the working methods of the Security Council. At the meeting the S5 called for the General Assembly to take a stand to on the issue and suggested 16 May as a possible date for a vote. This article provides a summary of the proposal and the meeting held on it.
Update: this resolution was withdrawn before action was taken on it.
Report on Security Council Reform Meeting 21 February 2011
By Mie Hansen, 12 March 2012
On 21 February 2012 the third meeting in the eighth round of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform was held, dedicated to the reform initiative of the Uniting for Consensus group. Based on statements delivered by Member States at the meeting as well as conversations with delegates and observers to the process, this report provides a summary of the meeting as well as an update on the current state of the negotiations.
Update on Security Council Reform: Meeting from 26 January 2012
By Alicia Stott, 15 February 2012
In a letter by the current chair of the Intergovernmental Negotiations to the Member States and the President of the General Assembly, it was stated that in the interest of facilitating more in-depth discussion and evaluation the remainder of the meetings for the eighth round of the group will be providing each of the representatives of the five major initiatives the opportunity to present their most current proposals for Security Council reform, beginning with the G-4.
Meeting in the General Assembly on
Security Council Reform, 8 and 9 November 2011
By Mie Hansen, 7 December 2011
On 8 and 9 November 2011 the 51st and 52nd plenary meetings of the 66th General Assembly session were held with a discussion of Agenda Item 122: Question of equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council and related matters. This article gives an overview of the debate and the statements made during the meetings, as well as an update on the developments in regard to Security Council reform leading up to the debate.
65th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
S5 presents draft resolution on Improving the Working Methods of the Security Council
By Mie Hansen, 2 May 2011
On 14 April, 2011, the Small Five Group (S5), consisting of Costa Rica, Jordan, Liechtenstein, Singapore and Switzerland, presented a draft resolution for Improving the Working Methods of the Security Council. The resolution was presented under agenda item 115 of the General Assembly (GA) that deals with follow-up to the outcome of the Millennium Summit. The S5 had presented its first draft resolution on the topic (A/60/L.49) in 2006 also as follow-up to the 2000/2005 Summits.
Update on Security Council Reform
By Mie Hansen, 5 April 2011
Since the Center’s latest update of 22 June 2010, Members States conducted text-based negotiations on 21 October 2010, 11 November 2010, 14 December 2010, and on 2 March 2011 in their efforts to reform the Security Council. Some countries apparently continue to slow down the negotiations, while others may push for a vote sooner rather than later.
64th SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Text-based Negotiations in Full Swing
22 June 2010
On June 16th the negotiations on Security Council reform proceeded with the third meeting of the fifth round. The meeting aimed at getting member states to discuss specific language on the fourth “key issue”. Many countries seemed to have misunderstood the intention of the Chair, however, and restated their positions rather than making suggestions for specific changes to the document at hand.
Potentially Historic Text on Security Council Reform
By Jakob Lund, May 13 2010
On May 10th, Amb. Zahir Tanin, the Chair of the intergovernmental negotiations on the question of equitable representation and increase in the membership of the Security Council and other matters related to the Security Council, sent out a long-awaited fax to all member states containing a “negotiation text”. The text and the annex can be accessed on the website of the PGA. The text includes the proposals sent by member states to Tanin's office since he opened the process of moving towards a text-based solution.
Open Debate on the Working Methods of the Security Council
By Jakob Silas Lund, 28 April 2010
On April 22nd, the Security Council’s Informal Working Group on Documentation and Other Procedural Issues held an open debate on the working methods of the Council. The debate raised some key questions that are relevant to the ongoing Security Council reform negotiations. Furthermore, to keep the issue of its working methods on the agenda of the Security Council is, in and of itself, an accomplishment.
A New Phase in Security Council Reform Has Started
10 February, 2010
On February 5th, the Chair of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform, Ambassador Tanin of Afghanistan, sent out a letter to all member states with an attachment of sixty pages. The document (available here and here) includes all “substantive input” submitted by Member States to the Chair thus far in the fourth round of negotiations. This marks the beginning of the fifth round, which, for the first time, will be text-based.
Moving Towards Text-Based Negotiations?
By Jakob Silas Lund, 21 January 2010
The previous month was an eventful one in terms of the Security Council reform process. On December 23rd, a group of countries sent a letter to the Chair of the intergovernmental negotiations, Ambassador Tanin of Afghanistan, urging him to present a composite paper. Following that, Tanin received a number of other letters concerning the process and on January 14th he replied with his own letter to all member states. This all culminated in the latest round of negotiations on January 19th and 20th in which the consequences of the letter exchanges were discussed.
Pros and Cons of Security Council reform
By Jakob Silas Lund, 19 January 2010
Through extensive interviews with experts as well as current and former Ambassadors and diplomats who have been close to the reform process, this article outlines and analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of the components incorporated in the proposals currently on the table.
The Long and Winding Road
By Jakob Silas Lund, 11 December 2009
On November 16th, the chair of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform, Ambassador Zahir Tanin of Afghanistan, sent a letter to all member states inviting them to the first meeting of the fourth round of negotiations. The negotiations ended up spanning over two days rather than the planned one-day session.
Reforming the Working Methods of the Security Council
By Jakob Silas Lund, 18 November 2009
While the discussion on Security Council reform primarily focuses on expansion of its membership, some countries maintain that reforming the way the Council conducts its work is much more relevant and significant for most member states. This article, based on interviews with a number of key diplomats and experts, explores suggestions made towards such reform in the last decade and analyzes the likely road ahead.
Annual Report of the Security Council
by Jakob S. Lund, 17 November, 2009
On November 12th and 13th, the UN General Assembly (GA) met to discuss the annual report of the Security Council immediately followed by a plenary meeting on the questions of equitable representation in and increase in the membership of the Council.
63rd SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Third Round of Intergovernmental Negotiations on UN Security Council Reform Conclude
By Jakob S. Lund and Daniel Safran-Hon, 22 September, 2009
At the 63rd session, Member States started intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform, chaired by Afghan Ambassador Zahir Tanin. The following summarizes three days of negotiations, which took place in early September. Immediately following the final round in this session, the General Assembly opted for the possibility of continued negotiations in the 64th session.
Chair of Informal General Assembly Consultations on Security Council Reform Describes Future Steps in Press Conference
Report by Daniel Safran-Hon, 22 July 2009
In a press conference given on Monday 20 July 2009, Ambassador Zahir Tanin, Permanent representative of Afghanistan to the UN and Chair of Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council reform described the next steps in the consultations on SC reform towards the end of the 63rd General Assembly. The Ambassador called for good use of the summer by Member States and concluded that "there is light at the end of the tunnel".
Second Round of Security Council Reform Talks Ends
29 June 2009
Member States met on 22 and 23 June 2009 to discuss the working methods of the Security Council in the last installment of the second round of intergovernmental negotiations on Council reform. The contents or dates of a third round have not yet been made public.
Second Round of Talks on Security Council Reform Begins
16 June 2009
Following the end of the first round of negotiations on Security Council reform, and the subsequent release of the Chairman's overview of these proceedings, Member States met on 22 and 26 May and on 11 and 12 June to further narrow down the reform options in a second round of negotiations.
Facilitator Releases Status Report on Security Council Reform Process: Maps Way Forward
20 May 2009
Ambassador Zahir Tanin of Afghanistan, Chairman and facilitator of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform, released yesterday a paper summarizing the first round of negotiations as well as outlining the process during the coming second round. Member States will meet on Friday, 22 May 2009, to discuss the issue.
In Fifth Meeting on Security Council Reform, Countries Look at the Relationship Between the General Assembly and the Council
24 April 2009
Member States met on 20 April 2009 to discuss the relationship between the General Assembly and the Security Council in the fifth and last meeting in a first round of negotiations on how to reform the Security Council.
In Fourth Reform Meeting, Countries Discuss Size and Working Methods of the Security Council
10 April 2009
Member States met on 7 and 8 April to discuss the size and working methods of the Security Council. It was the fourth of five meetings devoted to a number of key issues involved in an overall reform of the Council.
Third Meeting on Security Council Reform Looks at Regional Representation
2 April 2009
Member States met on 24 and 31 March to discuss 'regional representation' in the framework of Security Council reform. The two-day long meeting revealed that countries seriously disagree on the applicability of regional representation in the Security Council.
Second Meeting on Security Council Reform Addresses the Veto
18 March 2009
Member States met on 16 and 17 March to discuss the veto in the second of five meetings devoted to different substantive issues connected to Security Council reform.
First Security Council Reform Meeting on Substantive Issue Begins: Countries Talk Categories of Membership
6 March 2009
Member States met on 4 March and 5 March to discuss the first of five key issues related to Security Council reform. During the meeting, a large number of countries presented their perspectives on what new categories of membership should be added to a reformed Council.
Countries Welcome Work Plan as Security Council Reform Process Commences New Phase
by Lydia Swart, 24 February 2009
At the UN, in a meeting held on Thursday 19 February 2009, Member States approved a work plan outlining the rules of procedures and the structure of the upcoming negotiations on Security Council reform. The approval indicates that the process towards reform can move from discussions on procedure to more substantial negotiations.
Italy Hosts Meeting on Security Council Reform
6 February 2009
The Italian government hosted a meeting from 4 February to 6 February in Rome to address Security Council reform and especially the framework for the upcoming intergovernmental negotiations (more info available on the Italian UN Mission's website and in the following article from Reuter's). Some 80 countries were present, some on ministerial level others as observers, although the G4 was not invited. The meeting was an Italian initiative and was not a part of the official reform process.
First Informal Plenary of the General Assembly on Security Council Reform Underway
by Lydia Swart, 30 January 2009
Yesterday, the President of the General Assembly, Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann, presented the results of the preparatory discussions held during the last three months in the Working Group on Security Council Reform to an informal plenary of the General Assembly. His statement also contained information on the road ahead, and marks the beginning of a new chapter in the long history of Security Council reform.
Working Group Wraps Up Discussions
27 January 2009
The Open-ended Working Group on Security Council (OEWG) met on Monday, 26 January, for a wrap-up discussion on framework and modalities. Overall, the sentiments expressed during the meeting to a large extent mirrored statements delivered at the two previous working group meetings in December and January. No decision was made. It was the last OEWG meeting for now. On Thursday, 29 January 2009, Member States will meet in an informal plenary of the General Assembly to hear the Chairman present the results of the discussions in the OEWG.
Working Group Debates Modalities for Upcoming Negotiations on Security Council Reform
23 January 2009
The Open-ended Working Group on Security Council Reform met on Monday, 19 January 2009, to discuss what kind of modalities would be used during the upcoming intergovernmental negotiations slated to begin in an informal plenary of the General Assembly no later than 28 February.
Open-ended Working Group Meets to Discuss Framework for Upcoming Negotiations
8 December 2008
The Open-ended Working Group on Security Council reform met on Friday in the first of three scheduled meetings on the framework and modalities of the upcoming intergovernmental negotiations. Some 30 Member States spoke during the meeting, with a portion arguing that framework and modalities had to be agreed upon before embarking on further negotiations, while others claimed that the rules of procedure of the General Assembly would suffice as a general framework.
Security Council Reform – An Overview of Member States’ Positions
by Emanuel Evans, 4 December 2008
On Friday 5 December 2008, Member States will begin their consultations in the Open-ended Working Group on Security Council Reform on the framework and modalities of the upcoming intergovernmental negotiations. In this regard, the Center for UN Reform Educations has produced a chart outlining Member States' positions on Security Council reform.
Follow-up Discussion in GA on Security Council Reform; GA President Announces Time Frame for Process
3 December 2008
The General Assembly met on 18, 19 and 20 November 2008 in the annual joint debate on the question of the equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council and related matters and on Report of the Security Council (A/63/2) to the General Assembly. Following the debate, the PGA announced a time frame for the coming process leading to intergovernmental negotiations. First meeting on framework and modalities on Friday 5 December 2008.
First Meeting in Open-ended Working Group on Security Council Reform
11 November 2008 (updated on 17 November 2008)
The Open-Ended Working Group on Security Council Reform (OEWG) met on 11 and 17 November 2008 for the first meeting of the 63rd GA session. The meeting had been widely anticipated by Member States - especially after September’s dramatic and confusing conclusion of the Working Group - with many hoping that it would help shed light on the future process. Most comments made centered on the role of the Working Group vis-à-vis the upcoming intergovernmental negotiations, the need for a framework agreement in the Working Group before moving to intergovernmental negotiations, and how and when such negotiations could be initiated.
Security Council Reform – the 62nd GA Session and the Road Ahead
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 11 November 2008
The following analysis provides an update to chapter 1 on Security Council reform in the Center's publication “Managing Change at the United Nations” (April). It covers events and Member States dynamics in the Open-ended Working Group and in the Security Council during the 62nd General Assembly session, and - as the Open-ended Working Group is about to meet on 11 November 2008 - also on the road ahead.
62nd SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Member States Renew Mandate for Working Group on Security Council Reform after Intense Discussions
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 16 September 2008
With only a few hours left in the 62nd Session of the General Assembly and in the face of a total collapse, Member States finally managed to broker a groundbreaking deal to renew the mandate of the Open-ended Working Group on Security Council Reform. The deal - based on consensus - includes an ambitious plan to move discussions from the Working Group to intergovernmental negotiations in the General Assembly.
Security Council Reform Debate Heats up as Member States Negotiate Final Drafts
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 11 September 2008
After almost unanimously rejecting last week’s draft report on the achievements and future of the Open-ended Working Group on Security Council Reform, Member States met again on Monday, 8 September 2008, in a session aimed at reaching a compromise solution. The session resulted in a new draft, but in a subsequent meeting on 10 September 2008, that new document was once more met with heavy criticism, especially from members of the Uniting for Consensus group and India, and the GA President was sent back to redraft. The Open-ended Working Group will meet again tomorrow, Friday, to continue discussions.
ANALYSIS: Member States Balk at Latest Report on Security Council Reform
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 5 September 2008
Member States met on Tuesday, 2 September 2008, to discuss a recently published draft report on the current status and future of the Open-Ended Working Group on Security Council Reform. During the all-day meeting, a number of countries delivered statements, with many challenging both the contents of the draft report and the proposed way forward. The report - usually adopted by consensus - is expected to be redrafted and redistributed to Member States shortly; however, with several disgruntled interest groups concurrently planning their next move, rumors of a looming vote on the future of the Working Group are quickly spreading among delegates.
Security Council Holds Open Meeting on its Working Methods
28 August 2008
The Security Council met yesterday for the first time since 1994 to publicly discuss its working methods. The meeting was convened by Belgium, which holds the presidency of the Security Council for the month of August, following a request by the members of the so-called Small-Five group (S5) - Costa Rica, Jordan, Liechtenstein, Singapore and Switzerland. The meeting was based on Presidential Note S/2006/507, and aimed at addressing issues such as the agenda, access to meetings and briefings, documentation, informal consultations, program of work, resolutions and presidential statements, subsidiary bodies and newly elected members.
Security Council President Convenes First-ever Meeting to Discuss Annual Council Report to the GA
by Nicolas Christiansen, 30 July 2008
Member States met on 25 July 2008 to share their views on the content of the 2007 draft annual report of the Security Council to the General Assembly. The meeting took place at the initiative of Viet Nam which holds the Presidency of the Security Council for the month of July, and was the first of its kind.
ANALYSIS: A Look at the Transitional Approach to Security Council Reform
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 24 June 2008
At the last meeting of the Open-Ended Working Group on Security Council reform, on 17 June 2008, a task force composed of ambassadors and appointed by the GA President presented their status report. It included a reform suggestion based on the idea of a transitional approach. According to this approach, Member States would agree on basic reforms now, with a view to revisiting them at a later mandatory review conference; at which time they could be reversed or amended. The following provides some additional insight on the legal and political implications of such a transitional approach.
Member States Meet to Discuss Report of the Task Force on Security Council Reform
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 19 June 2008
Member States met on 17 June 2008, in a closed meeting of the Open-ended Working Group on Security Council reform, to discuss the report of the Task Force. At the meeting, some 40 countries delivered statements, expressing differing views on the way to move forward. The GA President is expected to present a status report to the GA in mid-July on the work of the Working Group, possibly with a view to beginning intergovernmental negotiations.
ANALYSIS: Member States Talk Security Council Reform Again: A Never-Ending Process?
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 16 April 2008
The Working Group on Security Council reform met on Thursday 10 April 2008 to discuss a draft put forward by Cyprus at the initiative of Germany. The text was an attempt to infuse new momentum in the slow-going debate, but was almost certainly “killed off” by heavy criticism from especially the Uniting for Consensus bloc and a large portion of developing countries. The following is an analysis of the current developments.
CHAPTER 1 of the Center's April 2008 publication Managing Change at the United Nations: SECURITY COUNCIL REFORM
by Jonas von Freiesleben
This chapter explores the history behind efforts to reform the Security Council.
Six Member States Submit New Proposal for Security Council Reform
by ReformtheUN.org, 27 March 2008
A group of UN Member States has prepared a new proposal on reforming the Security Council. The President of the General Assembly, Srgjan Kerim, is expected to review the proposal and guide States toward the next steps to intergovernmental negotiations on Council expansion and improvements in working methods.
Working Group on Security Council Reform Meets to Discuss Way Forward
17 December 2007
On 14 December 2007, the Open-Ended Working Group on Security Council Reform met in a closed meeting to discuss how to move the process forward towards intergovernmental negotiations. At the meeting Chairman Sgrjan Kerim announced the formation of a four-person task-force, a time-table, the organization of work, and heard statements from almost 40 Member States.
ANALYSIS: General Assembly Debates Security Council Reform: Still Slow Going
by Jonas von Freiesleben, 15 November 2007
The General Assembly met from 12 to 14 November 2007 in a plenary debate to discuss Security Council reform. The meetings did not result in any concrete steps; instead they clearly illustrated the continued divisiveness of the issue, which is now entering its 15th year as an agenda item.
61st SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
REPORTS & ANALYSES
Member States Finalize Report On Way Forward
14 September 2007
The "Open-Ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters Related to the Security Council” met today in a closed session at the United Nations to finalize discussions of their year-end progress report to the General Assembly.
Open-Ended Working Group Releases Draft Report
7 August 2007
“The Open-Ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters Related to the Security Council” released a draft version of its progress report. In brief, the Working Group recommends that the General Assembly continue to consider the issue of Security Council reform during the 62nd session, which begins on 18 September 2007.
Member States Discuss Next Steps for Security Council Reform
19 July 2007
Member States met for an informal meeting to discuss how to move the process of reforming the Security Council towards actual intergovernmental negotiations:
Facilitators identify next steps for Security Council reform
26 June 2007
The President of the GA, H.E. Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa circulated today the Report of the two facilitators, Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz of Chile and Ambassador Christian Wenaweser of Liechtenstein, based on their consultations with Member States and groups of Member States on how to proceed with the reform of the Security Council.
Security Council Reform Not Progressing
by ReformtheUN.org, 25 June 2007
Two newly appointed facilitators of GA consultations on Security Council reform have met with regional groups on possible ways to move forward. They aim to submit a report to GA President Haya Rashed Al Khalifa by the end of this month. So far, views diverge on how to proceed, and no compromises have been reached on current reform proposals.
NAM Meets to Discuss Security Council Reform
8 June 2007
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) met today in a closed session at the United Nations to conduct consultations on the Security Council reform process. The deliberations took place on the basis of the Report of the five Facilitators, issued in mid-April 2007.
GA President Appoints Two New Facilitators
22 May 2007
The President of the GA, H.E. Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa, appointed Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz of Chile, and Ambassador Christian Wenaweser of Liechtenstein to conduct consultations with Member States on how to move forward the process of Security Council Reform. The consultations will be conducted on the basis of the Report of the five Facilitators, issued in mid-April 2007.
Member States Discuss the Five Facilitators' Report
7 May 2007
During the 8th meeting of the Open-ended Working Group of the 61st GA session Member States discussed the assessment of the state of the debate on Security Council Reform and the “Notions on the way forward.”
Direction of Security Council Reform Unclear After Facilitators' Report
by ReformtheUN.org, 30 April 2007
The President of the GA will hold an informal meeting on Thursday, 3 May, at 3 pm, which in essence will assess Member States’ willingness to pursue a “transitional approach” to reform of the Council.
Five Facilitators Release Report
19 April 2007
Today, the five GA-appointed facilitators for Security Council reform submitted their combined report of “Notions on the Way Forward.” The report is available through the link above.
Update on Security Council Reform Consultations
by Reformtheun.org, 5 April 2007
Consultations on Security Council reform took place throughout March, as the five co-facilitators attempted to assess elements of common ground between member states and possible guiding principles for an agreement.
Debate on Security Council Reform Continues
15 March 2007
On 13 March 2007, Member States reconvened for a joint interactive debate on Security Council Reform under the guidance of the five facilitators appointed by the President of the GA Assembly. The meeting was chaired by Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz of Chile.
Update on the Informal Consultations of 19-23 February 2007
28 February 2007
During the week of 20-23 February 2007, Member States resumed discussions on Security Council Reform under the guidance of the five facilitators recently appointed by the President of the General Assembly.
The Security Council: Reforms Concerning its Membership - An Overview
12 February 2007
This update from the Center for UN Reform Education surveys the different attitudes of Member States on Security Council reform.
Update on GA Discussions on Security Council Reform
9 February 2007
The President of the GA, Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa, convened this year’s first meeting of the "Open Ended Working Group (OEWG) on the Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council."
For more on the background of Security Council reform, please see the latest publication from the Center for UN Reform: