Chair: Adrij Chakraborty
Vice-Chairs: Dimitra Psychari, Sherlita Nurosidah
The debate concerning Security Council reform has historically been a very complex one. It goes hand in hand with the overall effort to reform the United Nations, in order to make it more broadly representative, efficient and transparent and thus to further enhance its effectiveness, legitimacy and implementation of its decisions. While there is consensus that the current structure and mode of working of the Council is problematic, there is wide disagreement as to how this can be addressed.
In the wake of an alarming wave of terrorist attacks by Non State Actors, an efficient and quick Security Council now seems to be needed more than ever. However, several crevices of the Security Council that indeed emanate from the Charter, have stopped it from taking rapid and effective action in situations and crises that are urgent and life-threatening.
The most important crevices of the Security Council include the veto power of the permanent members (P5), its size and representation, and its working methods. The most criticism has been directed at the infamous “veto power” of the P5 members since it has time and time again stopped the Council from adopting binding resolutions which would effectively deal with a life threatening crisis. An apt An apt example of that would be China’s and Russia’s constant veto on sanctions against Syria, Sudan or Iran or the US’ common veto on resolutions that are critical to Israel. The rationale for initially giving this great amount of power to the P5 nations was that the UN should not be taking direct action against any of its principal founding members. Yet we see that this has been sacrificed in the name of national interests, and therefore results in inefficiency and non-security.
Delegates should always keep in mind the mandate of the Security Council as laid out by Chapter V of the UN Charter; namely to maintain international peace and security and to take actions whenever the aforementioned are threatened. The structure and mechanism of the Council play a crucial role in allowing those objectives to be achieved, and should therefore be revisited in the wake of alarming international threats by Non State Actors.