A F R I C A tion passed by two thirds majority in the U.N. General Assembly. In theory, because of the need to get ratification by two thirds of the U.N. members, including by all the five permanent members of the Security Council, the amendment process is ultimately subject to a veto by any of them, including a pocket veto in which one or more of them simply fail to act. In practice, however, this step can be invoked only after at least a two-third majority of the member-states have expressed support for the amendment through their votes in the assembly and possibly through their national ratification processes. So in terms of the politics of the United Nations,
Q U A R T E R L Y
the costs of vetoing a proposed charter amendment can be quite high and this has never been done before. They could have surmounted the danger of being blocked by the five permanent members of the Security Council if only they had shown the unity of purpose. It would take a very long time before a similar kind of global pressure could be built up for reform of this vital institution that man ages peace in the world. The only major outcome of the recent exercise is that the developing countries could firmly place the issue of restructuring of the United Nations Security Council on the international agenda.
Endnotes 1. For brief overview of the development leading to the adoption of this resolution, see ‘Yearbook of the United Nations 1963’ (1966), pp.80-87 2. Niel Blokker, ‘Towards a Second Enlargement of the Security Council? A Comparative Perspective’, in Niel Blokker and Nico Schrijver, ed., ‘The Security Council and the Use of Force’ (Leiden; Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2005), p.254 3. Thomas G. Weiss, ‘The Illusion of U.N. Security Council Reform’, The Washington Quarterly, vol.26, no.4 (Autumn), 2003, p.152 4. U.N. Doc. GA Res. 47/62 of 11 December 1992 5. U.N. Doc. GA Res. 48/26 of 3 December 1993 6. U.N. Doc. A/49/47. 7. Mazrui, Ali A., ‘Africa’s International Relations: The Diplomacy of Dependency and Change’ (Boulder, Westview Press, 1977), pp.195-197 8. C.S.R. Murthy, ‘Making the U.N. Security Council More Representative: India’s Prospects’, in C.S.R. Murthy, ed., ‘India in Tomorrow’s United Nations’ (New Delhi: India International Centre, 1995), p.24 9. ‘Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters’, in Joachim Muller, ed., ‘Reforming the United Nations: New Initiatives and Past Efforts Vol.III’, (The Hague: Kluwer Law International, 1997), p.III.45/23 10. Ibid, p. III.45/25 11. Ambassador Femi George, Nigerian High Commissioner to Canada, ‘National Perspectives on the Reform of the United Nations Security Council: The Position of Nigeria’, http://www.nigeriahcottawa.com/political/Position%20of%20 Nigeria.htm 12. ‘Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters’, in Joachim Muller ed., n.9, p.III.45/9 13. ‘Report of the Open-ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters related to the Security Council’, U.N. Doc. A/58/47, p.23 14. Bardo Fassbender, ‘Pressure for Security Council Reform’, in David M. Malone, ed., ‘The U.N. Security Council: From the Cold War to the 21st Century’ (London: Lynne Reinner Publishers, 2004), 350
15. U.N. Doc. A/9825, 16 November 2000 16. ‘Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters’, in Joachim Muller, ed., n.9, p.III.45/8 17. C.S.R. Murthy, ‘Making the U.N. Security Council More Representative: India’s Prospects’, n. 8, p.25 18. Cited in Ibid, p. 25 19. ‘Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters’, in Joachim Muller, ed., n.9, p.10 20. ‘A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility’, report of the High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Changes, (UN: 2004), p.80 21. U.N. Doc. A/59/2005, 21 March 2005 22. Ambassador Femi George, n. 11, pp.4-5 23. The Common African Position on the Proposed Reform of the United Nations Endorsed at Seventh Extraordinary Session of the Executive Council of AU on 7-8 March 2005 at Addis Ababa. (Ext/EX.CLl/2(VII)) 24. African Union Assembly Declaration, Assembly/AU/Del.2 (V) 25. U.N. Doc.,A/59/L.67 26. U.N. Doc., A/59/876, 18 July 2005 27. U.N. General Assembly Press Release, GA/10370, 18 July 2005 28. Ibid 29. Ibid 30. Ibid 31. http:www//un.int/India/2005/ind/2005/ind1083.pdf 32. http://www.realinstitutoelcano.org/analisis/799.asp 33. Ibid. 34. Edward C. Luck, ‘How Not to Reform the United Nations’, Global Governance Vol.11, no.4 (OctoberDecember), 2005, p. 411 35. http://www.glocom.org/special_topics/social_trend/ 20050727_trends_s123/index.html 36. Ibid 37. Ibid 38. The Punch Newspaper, Lagos, Nigeria, 5 August 2005 39. Ambassador Femi George, n. 11, p.11 40. African Union Document, Ext.Assembly/AU/Dec.1 (IV). 41. http://www.hindu.com/2005/07/29/stories/200507291 6571200.htm