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UNGA chief ‘optimistic’ about Security Council reform negotiations

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President of the United Nations General Assembly Maria Fernanda Espinosa (Photo: UN/IANS) by .
President of the United Nations General Assembly Maria Fernanda Espinosa

President of the General Assembly Maria Fernanda Espinosa is “optimistic from what she has been hearing” about the negotiations on Security Council reforms and expects a report from the co-facilitators in June, according to her Spokesperson Monica Villela Grayley…writes Arul Louis

President of the United Nations General Assembly Maria Fernanda Espinosa (Photo: UN/IANS) by .
President of the United Nations General Assembly Maria Fernanda Espinosa

“For the time being, representatives are talking and discussing” reforms, Grayley said. “The negotiations remain and the president said before she is optimistic from what she has been hearing.”

By June, Permanent Representatives Lana Zaki Nusseibeh of the United Arab Emirates and Christian Braun of Luxembourg, whom Espinosa appointed as the co-facilitators of process known formally as Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN), “will produce a document on the conclusions of the negotiations and conversations in order to make it transparent to everybody so that everybody knows what has been discussed and agreed,” Grayley said.

The IGN negotiations will end in May, even though the annual General Assembly session continues till September and India has suggested continuing with the reform process instead of stopping them in May and restarting them in 2020.

India’s Permanent Representative Syed Akbaruddin said at the IGN meeting in February, “In no session, in the last four years, have we ever finished our work in May, a full four months before the end of the UN General Assembly session”.

Therefore, he suggested extending the negotiating sessions so that “we keep ourselves open to providing opportunities for completion of discussions, should the time envisaged not be sufficient”.