UN General Assembly to debate veto powers of Security Council

Vote could come as early as next week.

UN General Assembly to debate veto powers of Security Council

Liechtenstein is set to bring up a draft resolution at the 193-member UN General Assembly that would require any of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council that exercises their veto power to justify its use.

The veto right of the permanent members has long been discussed, but with Russia launching its war on Ukraine, which has left thousands of people dead, the issue has received more attention lately.

The council has been unable to function in recent years when one of its members, which are expected to be the guarantors of global peace, uses its veto right for their own interests.

The resolution might be put to a vote on April 26, Anadolu Agency has learned. If adopted, the General Assembly will convene within 10 days when any of the permanent members of the council vetoes any resolution, be able to debate the vetoed issue, and request the nation that uses the veto right to defend its move.

The resolution is co-sponsored by 57 nations including the US and Turkiye.

"When a Permanent Member casts a veto, that member should be prepared to explain why the resolution at issue would not have furthered the maintenance of international peace and security," said US envoy to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield in a statement last week.

"We are particularly concerned by Russia’s shameful pattern of abusing its veto privilege over the past two decades," she added. "The UN General Assembly resolution on the veto will be a significant step toward the accountability, transparency, and responsibility of all of the Permanent Members of the Security Council who wield its power."

Russia has been the most frequent user of the veto right. The first veto was used by the Soviet Union in 1946, and Russia has so far vetoed 120 resolutions.

Russia's vetoes peaked with the Syrian civil war in 2011, and China sided with Russia and vetoed many resolutions, including one on the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

Russia is followed by the US, which used its veto power the most in the council. The US has so far vetoed 82 resolutions, most of them against Israel.

The UK and France have not used their veto power since 1989.

*Servet Gunerigok in Washington contributed to this story

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Nisan 2022, 19:22