Jordan, Kuwait may replace Saudi at UN Security Council

Kuwait and Jordan are favorites to replace Saudi Arabia in the UNSC after the the Saudi's turned down an offer for a seat on the council.

Jordan, Kuwait may replace Saudi at UN Security Council

World Bulletin / News Desk

Kuwait is a possible candidate alongside Jordan to replace Saudi Arabia at the UN Security Council, a former Bosnian ambassador to the UN told Anadolu Agency.

"According to my sources, Kuwait and Jordan are two potential states to replace the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," said Muhamed Sacirbey, a former foreign minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina who is familiar with diplomatic affairs in New York. 

Saudi Arabia had heavily campaigned for two years for the much coveted seat at the UNSC, and was elected on October 17th along with other new non-permanent members from different regions.

But, on October 18th, less than 24 hours after the election, Riyadh - to the surprise of many including UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon - rejected the seat citing the council's failure to act on the crisis in Syria.

NEXT IN ORDER

Media reports have claimed Jordan was likely to replace Saudi Arabia for the UNSC seat after Amman had dropped out last week from a race to be elected to UN Human Rights Council clearing the way for the Saudis to win a seat at that body unopposed.   

"Kuwait would have been next in line after the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to be proposed and probably elected to this seat from the Asian Group," Mr. Sacirbey explained.

Kuwait had expressed willingness to be the next Arab candidate from the Asia-Pacific group and to run for the 2018-2019 term on the Security Council.

Mr. Sacirbey said Saudi Arabia's withdrawal from the UN Security Council "is still debated as to the motive, but there is now a behind-the-scenes discussion over who should replace Saudi Arabia on the Council or should in fact other states also withdraw to finally compel a change or a reform in the Council."

In the meantime, a UN spokesperson has repeated several times that Saudi Arabia did not officially notify the UN of their decision and that they will not going to take their place in UNSC on the due date.

According to media reports Jordan's Prince Zeid Al-Raad was already in consultations in Amman to discuss this issue.

A senior Jordanian diplomat at the UN, however, refused to comment when asked by an AA correspondent in New York whether Jordan will replace Saudi Arabia at the UNSC.

Mr. Sacirbey, the Bosnian diplomat, stressed that Prince Zeid Al-Raad, Jordan's envoy at the UN, was "a very able and highly respected diplomat."

Saudi Arabia's rejection of the council seat raised the eyebrows of many as some say it caused problems for the UN. It is almost certain, however, that in January 2014, an Arab country will take the seat.

Saudi Arabia's final decision is not clear yet but some analysts say that Riyadh may just return to the Security Council as if nothing had happened.

"An Arabic country by tradition would have been elected to this seat and efforts by a state not fitting such profile could produce further problems," said Mr. Sacirbey.

Saudis offered few reasons for rejecting the UN seat, including the council's "inaction on Syria" and lack of progress in resolving the Palestinian problem. But they have offered no reasons why they still did not send an official letter to the any of the UN's principal organs affirming their position.

Expert say Saudi Arabia's rejection of the UN Security Council seat was a protest message in response to a thaw in relations between Washington and Tehran. They say Saudis' final call for the UNSC seat may still be influenced by the outcome of nuclear negotiations between the Western powers and Iran which are scheduled for a new round for November 20th after latest talks in Geneva proved inconclusive.

Last Mod: 11 Kasım 2013, 09:44
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