Statement by H.E. Mr. Tsuneo Nishida
Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations
at the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform
2 July 2012
I have the honor of making a joint introductory statement on behalf of the G4.
We welcome today’s meeting as an opportunity to express once again
our views on Security Council Reform. We do this with the benefit of very
productive discussions held on the five main reform proposals. We once
again thank you, Mr. Chairman, for your initiative. The G4 draws two
important directions from the meetings that need to be operationalized.
First, in each and every of the meetings, a clear majority of delegates
demanded an expansion of membership in both categories –
non-permanent and permanent, which was confirmed by broad and
cross-regional support for the ‘short-resolution’. The demand for an
expansion in both categories of membership was expressed by the
delegations from the Africa Group, the L.69 as well as numerous small and
medium-sized states therein, and also permanent members and numerous
This, Mr. Chairman, is a fact that needs to be recognized.
Second, Mr. Chairman, the past discussions also showed near-universal
support for an improvement of Security Council working methods.
Needless to say, this is also an indispensable part of the G4 position. In
this regard, we hope to see continuous improvement of this matter, aiming
for increased effectiveness and transparency of the Security Council.
Throughout the series of meetings, we have gained a clearer and
deeper understanding of each group’s position on this issue. Now is the
time to start exploring achievable reform. The need to finally move
forward was also underlined during the Retreat that PGA al-Nassir had
organized and for which we want to express our gratitude.
We have now reached the stage at which we must concretize our ideas
and start real negotiations. This is ‘a logical and straightforward
follow-up’ to the five meetings, as referred to in your letter of June 11. It
is G4’s strong conviction that a wide coalition of Member States supports
expansion of the Security Council in both the permanent and
non-permanent categories and that such a strong backing should thus be
considered as the basis for the next round of intergovernmental
The G4 is a reform-oriented and results-driven group. We want to
achieve real progress and not retain the status quo. We will continue to
engage with all reform-minded member states on ways how to translate
the will of the clear majority of member states into action. This will include
discussions on the various modalities of an expansion in both categories.
But moving forward will also require your strong leadership, Mr.
Chairman, in order to achieve tangible progress. We sincerely hope to
see you, Mr. Chairman, demonstrate concrete steps to begin real
negotiations after today’s meeting which would demonstrate that our
intensive discussions in the current session of the General Assembly were
not in vain. Among several actions to take, the G4 reiterates its call for a
focused Rev.3 document expanding the Council in both categories and
incorporating the other key elements in order to provide the text for real
Let me make some remarks from Japan’s national capacity. The last
five meetings helped the Member States gain a clear and deep
understanding of each group’s position on the issue. This was the first
time in this framework that the IGN was conducted in a more practical
manner. On the other hand, however, we Member States shared the fact
that such discussion has not brought any tangible results to start ‘real
negotiations.’ Even the modest proposal of S-5, asking for the
improvement of the Security Council working methods, has ended in vain,
which I find quite disappointing.
Mr. Chairman, and fellow colleagues,
Japan firmly believes that we have had enough discussion, and is eager
to move the process forward; otherwise the Security Council loses its
effectiveness and legitimacy as an essential mechanism for the
maintenance of peace and security. Japan is ready to discuss, with a
flexible and realistic viewpoint, various options which will pave the way for
the expansion in both the permanent and non-permanent categories,
including an option of establishing a longer-term category with possibility
of its conversion to the permanent category after certain period of time.
Japan, on our part, believes this approach offers a good basis for
starting concrete negotiation. It is high time for Member States to move
together up to a higher plateau where they can continue to discuss the
future outlook of the Security Council with broader perspective.
In conclusion, let me stress that the status quo or inaction are not
options. The future of the Security Council, and moreover the United
Nations as a whole, is at stake. Security Council reform must be in the
interests of all Member States, including the permanent members of the
Security Council, and if we, the Member States, truly believe that Security
Council Reform is indispensable for the future of the United Nations, we
need to prove it through concrete actions.
I thank you Mr. Chairman.