Statement by H.E. Ambassador Koro Bessho, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, At the Informal Meeting of the General Assembly, Third IGN meeting on Security Council Reform

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I thank the co-chairs for convening today’s meeting. Japan aligns itself with the statement delivered by my colleague Amb. Christoph Heusgen of Germany on behalf of the G4. Please allow me to make a few additional remarks in my national capacity.
The two clusters we are discussing today are those where we see the greatest convergence among the membership.
Everyone in this room believes that the Security Council’s size should be expanded so the Council will be more representative, and nearly everyone believes that the revised number of Council seats should be in the mid-20s. It is a widely shared belief that the Council would be more transparent, efficient, and effective if its working methods were revised and updated. I also believe that everyone in this room is of the view that the Council’s relationship with the General Assembly should be strengthened. We all share the belief that these changes will enhance the legitimacy of the Council’s decisions.
Japan is seeking a reformed Security Council that better reflects the reality of the current world and is more open and effective. Even before that happens, we have already played an active and collaborative role to improve the Council’s working methods during our tenure in the Council. In recent years, the Security Council was able to improve the transitional arrangements for newly elected Council members. And, after extensive negotiations, the Council adopted the revised Presidential Note 507 by consensus, ensuring that the broader membership can better understand the Council’s contemporary working methods. I am sure we can trust the Security Council to revise its working methods as we reform its structure and its relations with the General Assembly.
Japan will continue to work constructively with colleagues to make sure that all Member States are able to remain informed about the Council’s work and engage with the Council on matters of concern to them, not only in the current Security Council but also in the expanded Council.
Let me conclude by reemphasizing the two points that my delegation has been saying for some time now. We all know each other’s positions quite well, on these clusters and all others, and merely repeating them year after year will not help us make progress. While exploring the interlinkages between the clusters is a worthy goal, our present format unavoidably leads to a rather academic discourse since we have spent 25 years on same discussions. Only through actual negotiations, with give and take, can we move forward. It is high time for us to begin negotiations based on a common document with accurate attribution of each delegation’s position, the same way we do with all other issues in this Organization. We sense that an overwhelming majority of the Member States are ready to take the next step.
We also reiterate our call to use the full calendar at our disposal, and hold meetings through June, July, and September rather than summarily ending our work in May. Reform of the Security Council is too important to allow our negotiations to lie fallow all summer long.
I thank you.