Addis Ababa, August 25, 2017- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said today that Ethiopia will assume the presidency of the United Nation Security Council (UNSC) in the coming month of September. Ethiopia is taking over the presidency from Egypt for one month.
According to a report by the state media, Ethiopian News Agency (ENA) quoting Meles Alem, Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, during its presidency, Ethiopia will lead two important meetings.
The major events being planned for September under the Ethiopian presidency includes the 11th Annual Joint Consultative Meeting of the UNSC and the AUPSC at the African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa on 7 and 8 September 2017.
During the meeting, members of the Council are expected to deliberate on current situations in Somalia, South Sudan and the Chad basin, states the news report.
A High Level Open Debate on the reform of United Nations Peacekeeping Operations will also be held in New York on 20th September 2017. This meeting is expected to discuss on strengthening the UN peacekeeping missions. The session will be attended by countries that have role in peacekeeping operations.
Ethiopia was elected by the UN General Assembly in New York City by a land-slide vote of 185 votes out of 190 as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council starting from January 1, 2017 for two-year term.
Nonetheless, Ethiopia had been a member of this Security Council twice in the past; 1967- 1968 and 1989-1990. Having been elected for the third time, Ethiopia will again represent the continent of Africa for the next two years.
Ethiopia is Africa’s largest and world’s fourth troop contributor to UN mandated peacekeeping. Constituting around 10pc of UN troops, more than 12,000 Ethiopians are serving in Peacekeeping Missions around the world. Its membership as non-permanent member at the UNSC was backed by the African Union (AU).
Hence the UNSC attaches great importance to the reform and strengthening of UN Peacekeeping to make it fit for purpose in the 21st century.
The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations, charged with the maintenance of international peace and security as well as accepting new members to the United Nations and approving any changes to its United Nations Charter.
Its powers include the establishment of peacekeeping operations, the establishment of international sanctions, and the authorization of military action through Security Council resolutions. It is the only UN body with the authority to issue binding resolutions to member states.
The Security Council held its first session on 17 January 1946. The Council has 15 members, and each Member has one vote. Under the Charter, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions. Out of the 15 members, five of them are permanent members (China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States) while the remaining are non-permanent members (staying for 2 year term).