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Viet Nam & UN  »  UN Reform  »  63rd General Assembly
Statement by H.E Ambassador Hoang Chi Trung, Deputy Permanent Representative On Agenda Item 9: Report of the Security Council of the United Nations and Item 111: Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Counci
11-18-2008, 11:54 am

New York, Tuesday, November 18th 2008


Mr. President,

First of all, on behalf of the Vietnamese Delegation, let me begin by expressing our deepest thanks to H.E Ambassador Jorge Urbina, the Permanent Representative of Costa Rica and President of the Security Council for November, for presenting the report on the Council’s activities to the General Assembly.

My delegation wishes to align itself with the statement made by the distinguished representative of Cuba on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement on two important agenda items relating to the report of the Security Council and the question of equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council and related matters.

Mr. President,

It is a fact that the workload of the Security Council is increasing every year. This means that international peace and security remains to be challenged, and much is required of the Security Council to discharge its responsibilities. From a body that met only a few times a month, the Council has turned into one that holds hundreds of meetings a year. Within the period from August 2007 – July 2008, the Security Council held 219 formal meetings and 177 consultations of the whole. On the ground, in addition to 17 operating missions mandated by the Security Council, the deployment of other peacekeeping operations, particularly in Africa, is being speeded up to strengthen local peace-building efforts. 

While conflicts and deadly violence continue to take place in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Occupied Palestinian Territories and other regions, that’s not to mention the outbreak of new ones in the Balkans and the Caucasus, the United Nations-led peace-making efforts, including preventive diplomacy, conflict prevention, to some extent, have yielded encouraging tangible outcomes, helping to strengthen peace and stability in many countries in various regions of the world.

Against this background, we take note of the efforts made by the Security Council as well as the Secretariat to fulfil their work, especially by facilitating the implementation of the measures stated in the President’s July 2006 Note. As an advocate of the reforms which would increase the efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, and interaction of the United Nations system, including the Security Council, we are encouraged by the positive developments to this end, particularly a growing trend towards transparency with an unprecedented large number of open meetings held by the Council, and the more intensive participation by  non-member States in the Council’s work than ever before.

In this regard, Vietnam welcomes the open debate held by the Security Council on 27th August 2008 on reviewing the improvement of its working methods, as well as the efforts to intensify the Security Council’s consultations with the broader UN membership in its work, including the drafting of its annual report to the General Assembly.

Mr. President,

We are fully convinced that more should be done to make the Security Council further accountable for its actions as expected by the large membership. As the key part of the renewal of the United Nations system, the reform of the Security Council should be further expedited both in terms of its representation and working methods.

We would like to reiterate our position that a modern Security Council must be more representative and democratic with an enlargement in both permanent and non-permanent categories of membership. At the same time, a greater focus should be put on improving the Council’s agenda, working methods and decision-making process. We wish to underline the view of the Non-Aligned Movement that transparency, openness and consistency are key elements that the Council should observe.

To this end, we are in favor of creating more opportunities for the United Nations members to express their views and proposals on issues of which the Council is seized. Frequent consultations with concerned parties would also do much to help ensure the greatest support for the Council. However, transparency must not be exercised at the expense of overlapping the work of the Council and that of other bodies such as the General Assembly, ECOSOC, OCHA and other agencies, and hence weakening their coordination.

To improve its efficiency, apart from measures to streamline its work, the Council should avoid involvement in issues not falling under the purview of its mandate as stipulated by the Charter of the United Nations, and reserve more efforts to facilitating dialogue and mediation rather than abusing sanctions by invoking Chapter VII of the Charter.

Mr. President,

It is high time for the state members to begin genuine negotiations on the reform of the Security Council. In support of Decision 62/557 adopted by the General Assembly on 15th September 2008, my Delegation welcomes the determination of the President of the General Assembly to push ahead the process of the Security Council reform at this Session. We are convinced that under the President’s wise leadership, the United Nations will reap fruitful outcomes on the way ahead. We also extend our support to H.E. Mr. Zahir Tanin, Permanent Representative of Afghanistan as chair of the inter-governmental negotiations. We are looking forward to working closely with other members of the United Nations in this process.

Finally, may I take this opportunity to express our most profound gratitude for the support that we have enjoyed from Member States in carrying out the duty as President of the Security Council in the month of July, the drafting of the current Report of the Council in particular.


I thank you, Mr. President.

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