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Switzerland elected to UN Security Council for the first time in its history — Geneva Solutions

By Geneva Solutions

A view of the Secretariat Building, with Members States’ flags flying in the foreground, at United Nations headquarters in New York, 2017. (UN Photo/Rick Bajornas)

Twenty years after joining the United Nations, Switzerland has been elected to the Security Council with 187 votes out of 193. It will hold one of the ten non-permanent seats for from 2023 to 2024. Ecuador, Japan, Malta and Mozambique were also elected.

The election of Switzerland to the Security Council has been welcomed by UN secretary general Antonio Guterres “as a further proof of Switzerland’s commitment to global peace and security”.

“Switzerland has always been a beacon in the international community for its principled approach to peace and multilateralism,” Guterres’ spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told Keystone-ATS on Thursday.

Raymond Loretan, ambassador and former Swiss consul general in New York said: “Switzerland’s successful election to the Security Council shows how much our country is appreciated at the UN after only 20 years of participation. In addition to its other objectives, Switzerland should continue to work on the reform of the Security Council. In this, a neutral state with no hidden agenda will certainly gain more credibility.”

“The reform of the Security Council could, for example, concern the number of permanent members and the duration of the mandate of non-permanent members [such as Switzerland]. This process cannot be completed in two years — the length of Switzerland’s term — but this time frame allows the necessary impetus to be given and the discussions to be steered in the right direction. It is not the size of the country that makes the difference, but the intelligence of the proposals and the know-how to move them forward.”

“One could ask whether the number of permanent members of the Security Council should not be expanded, and whether the modalities of the veto right, which has shown its limits in the Ukrainian crisis, should be reviewed. Furthermore, the UN must be much more present on the ground. Its restraint in the current war, especially at the beginning of the conflict, highlights a problematic, even incomprehensible restraint.”

This article was first published in French by Le Temps. It was adapted and translated to English by Geneva Solutions.

Originally published at https://genevasolutions.news.

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