Informal Meeting of the Plenary on the Intergovernmental negotiations on the question of equitable representation and increase in the membership of the Security Council and other matters related to the Council
His Excellency Mr Ahmed Sareer, Permanent Representative of Maldives to the United Nations
New York, 26 March 2015
Salutations and Introduction:
At the outset, allow me to express our appreciation to the Chair of the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform His Excellency Courtenay Rattray for convening this timely meeting. We are pleased to participate in this briefing session, as a sign that we are gaining pace and progressing further down the road to reform.
Last month, the Maldives joined the resounding chorus of Member States calling for urgent, meaningful reform of the Security Council. At that last session, we heard the same sentiments repeated over and over: that the talk has gone on for too long; that it is time to act now; that we are ready for real negotiations towards a resolution. As you yourself noted, Mr. Chair, at least 40 Member States called on your leadership to proceed to text-based negotiations.
On the need for text-based negotiations:
The Maldives supports the need to move to text-based negotiations. [In the event that Chair proposes text-based] We applaud your efforts to rise above the culture of secrecy and exclusivity that has surrounded the Security Council and its affairs, and instigate a fair, transparent and streamlined process for achieving reform. However, as this is the first time we are hearing of your suggested framework for taking these discussions forward, we cannot respond to the substance of your proposal today. This is a process that has been stalemated for too long. And thus, we strongly support your efforts to move the process forward.
The Maldives would like to reassert our views on reform of the Security Council. Firstly, we agree with the vast majority of States that the Security Council’s membership must be expanded, including both permanent and non-permanent membership, to better reflect the organisation of the United Nations as it is today, and its pinnacle values of fairness, inclusiveness and equitable representation.
In line with these principles, we ask that a non-permanent, cross-regional seat be reserved for Small Island Developing States. SIDS like the Maldives are some of the most marginalised voices in international fora. SIDS represent one-fifth of the world, yet 78% of us have never gained a seat on the Security Council. We need a SIDS-specific seat on the Council to correct this flawed picture of representation.
On working methods:
Secondly, we believe it is time to review the use of the veto power, and consider the proposal for voluntarily limits on that power in situations of mass crimes and atrocities. Finally, the Maldives, as a member of the ACT group, would like to see further improvements to the working methods of the Security Council – including greater accountability, coherence, and transparency.