Monday, 13 January, 2020

Is UN able to solve International problems?

By Abdolreza Ghofrani, Senior International analyst

71th session of General Assembly of United Nations started 13 September 2021 in New York. As usual, the heads of states, prime ministers and foreign ministers of 193 member states of the world body will address their view points and positions on the international issues, and sometimes their domestic matters.

Next year, naturally some of the high ranking official taking part in this session will not be present because the term of their office will end and new figures represent their governments.

In 71th session of GA there are two significant figures that will be their last time in this forum saying their farewell to the United Nations. The first one is US President Barak Obama, whose second term of office will end January 2017. The next one is United Nations Secretary General Ban KY Moon who after ten years in this high international office will leave 31 December 2016.

Mr. KY, appointed to this job on rotation basis ten years ago from Asia (South Korea), will be replaced by a European.

We, here, do not intend to discuss the successors of either Mr. Obama or of any other heads of states. However, the focus is mainly on the appointment of new UN Secretary General irrespective of who he/ or she may be or their nationalities.

Over the past couple of months, however, there have been hearsays on different nominees and here again, on the basis of rotation, this time around a European will be the chief of the world body.

Here again we do not discuss the nominees. However there are two points that are worthy to be noted.

First, summing up, briefly, the performance of present Secretary General over the past decade. And the second is the system new secretary general is appointed and what he /or she is expected to do.

We cannot but admit that MR. KY’s performance in this high international office has not been as remarkable as was expected by world community.

We should not  lose sight of the fact that he was appointed from the biggest and most populated continent of the world, which encompass  most of third world countries, and more important of all two biggest world economies, Japan and China.

By possessing these advantages, he definitely has had a strong and resilient backing. His performance proves that he did not use these potentials as supposedly he deserved to do.

Moreover, there were gossips around that it was not expected that he be reappointed for the second term, however, he was selected for which we will not intention to go into details.

It is worthy to note that over the past seventy years distinguished personalities such as Dag Hammarskjöld( Sweden ) , U Thant (Myanmar ,formerly Burma ) Javier Pérez de Cuéllar (Peru ) and finally Kofi Annan had served leaving brilliant records in this high international office and one them even did give his life for the objectives of this world body.

Comparing the performance of those brilliant figures with that of Mr. KY’s  during his two term of office naturally  shows that he could have done much better particularly in present international critical situations.

The second issue is the way that UN Secretary General is selected. “The only guiding text is Article 97 of the United Nations Charter, which states that “The Secretary-General shall be appointed by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.”

As a result, the selection is subject to the veto of any of the five permanent members of the Security Council. In 1946, the General Assembly adopted a resolution stating that it was “desirable for the Security Council to proffer one candidate only for the consideration of the General Assembly, and for debate on the nomination in the General Assembly to be avoided.

“It goes without saying that the five permanent and non-permanent members of SC, given their political considerations and of course interests can agree on one certain candidate. This is also a subject that requires a different debate that by and large falls within the general restructuring of the United Nations.

For years, restructuring has been an important subject being debated in the world body with no concrete results, and it sounds that more delay in this subject is not plausible.

Notwithstanding all weakness and flaws of United Nations and its affiliated agencies that, in one way or another, some people may discuss, this world body still is the best forum for making and keeping world peace as well as resolving the regional conflicts. Certainly, UN restructuring and particularly the way of selection of its secretary general will make it more powerful for achieving the objectives  set in UN Charter.

Otherwise,just holding sessions and delivering speeches and explaining the international problems will not resolve many existing international dilemmas.

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1 Comment

  1. Amir

    September 20, 2021 at 6:22 pm

    Yes, one condition, keep permanent members that are under Security Council and U.S. out of direct involvements in UN. UN is the abbreviation of United Nations, NOT United States of America and Security Council. For god sake they call it United Nations, not united front of some members who dictate their hidden agendas. See what they did to Iraq under WMD, then Afghanistan for some faked name such as Al Qaeda, and finally to Iran under the phony scenario of “making nuclear bomb”. The Security Council members should be elected by the other majorities of UN members for limited time. It should as well be rotated among the participating nations and the members should not be allowed in Security Council for more than two terms within the context of UN until all members have the chance to participate in UN Security Council. As long as UN is controlled by permanent members, nothing right will happen.
    Yesterday Iraq, today Syria, and tomorrow, who knows, maybe gob will be scrutinized by being the GOD.
    God creates man- Man creates money- Money creates power – Power creates superiorities, Superiorities creates total unilateral control

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