President Xi Jinping (on display screen) of the People’s Republic of China addresses the final debate of the General Assembly’s seventy-fifth session. Credit: UN Photo/Eskinder Debebeby Thalif Deen (united nations)Thursday, September 24, 2020Inter Press ServiceUNITED NATIONS, Sep 24 (IPS) – With greater than 20,000 civilians killed final 12 months in conflicts in 10 international locations — together with Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Ukraine and Yemen– UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reiterated his name for a “global cease-fire”: a proposal which didn’t generate a optimistic response since he first introduced it final March.But with the UN’s strongest physique remaining deadlocked– and going through a cold confrontation between two main powers– the United Nations now appears to be in want of a “political cease-fire” at its very doorstep: inside its own 15-member Security Council (UNSC).On the opening day of the annual high-level debate within the General Assembly September 22, the US and China, two veto-armed members, battled it out with accusations and counter-accusations.The public confrontation between the 2 international locations is more likely to carry the us to a standstill – maybe with a worse-case situation of the US and China vetoing one another’s resolutions—proving the Security Council has outlived its usefulness.Dr Richard J. Ponzio, Director, Just Security 2020 and Senior Fellow on the Washington-based Stimson Center, advised IPS that starting in March, the U.S. blocked passage of a UNSC decision (till July) endorsing Secretary-General Guterres’ name for a world cease-fire, to make sure that in the course of the pandemic, life-saving help can attain essentially the most weak. Similar to its rationale then, he mentioned, President Trump’s primary emphasis in his annual General Assembly tackle was to pin the blame on China for the unfold of the coronavirus.In each tone and substance, Dr Ponzio identified, President Trump’s UNGA speech contrasted together with his contemporaries, together with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and French President Emmanuel Macron. “Whereas President Trump elected in his brief remarks to mainly attack China for spreading COVID-19 and other transgressions, the other world leaders spoke at length about the need for global cooperation and a rules-based international order to better cope with global threats and challenges,” he famous. President Xi Jinping (on display screen) of the People’s Republic of China addresses the final debate of the General Assembly’s seventy-fifth session. Credit: UN Photo/Eskinder DebebeTrump intensified his lengthy working battle with China, together with an acrimonious bilateral commerce struggle, when he launched a blistering assault on Beijing, throughout his tackle to the General Assembly.While singing the praises of his own achievements, he blamed Beijing for COVID-19: “We must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China”.Trump additionally accused China of “controlling” the World Health Organization (WHO) and dumping hundreds of thousands and hundreds of thousands of tons of plastic and trash into the oceans, overfishing different international locations’ waters, destroying huge swaths of coral reef, and emitting extra poisonous mercury into the ambiance than any nation wherever on this planet.One information website ran a becoming headline which learn: “Trump at the UN: America is good, China is bad”.Taking a passing shot at Trump’s unilateralism, Chinese President Xi Jinping advised the Assembly “humanity will win this battle” in opposition to the virus, and “any attempt of politicizing the issue, or stigmatization, must be rejected”. COVID-19 reminds us that financial globalization is an indeniable actuality and a historic pattern, he mentioned. “Burying one’s head in the sand like an ostrich, in the face of economic globalization, or trying to fight it with Don Quixote’s lance, goes against the trend of history,” he famous.China has “no intention to fight either a Cold War or a hot one with any country” “Let this be clear: The world will never return to isolation, and no one can sever the ties between countries,” Xi mentioned, stating that China won’t “engage in zero sum game.”In his 75th anniversary speech, Xi was equally hard-hitting: “No country has the right to dominate global affairs, control the destiny of others, or keep advantages in development all to itself. Even less should one be allowed to do whatever it likes and be the hegemon, bully or boss of the world. Unilateralism is a dead end.”Meanwhile, because the UN commemorates its 75th anniversary, one of the crucial widespread criticisms in opposition to the world physique is targeted largely on the Security Council the place member states have failed, over the past 25 years, of their longstanding efforts to reform and develop it.Perhaps the harshest criticism is its incapability—and its monumental failure — to resolve long-outstanding navy conflicts and political issues: together with discovering a homeland for the Palestinians.Stephen Zunes, Professor of Politics on the University of San Francisco, who has written extensively on the politics of the Security Council, advised IPS it is noteworthy that almost all of vetoes within the Security Council in latest a long time have been in regard to resolutions addressing violations of worldwide humanitarian legislation. “Both the United States and Russia have repeatedly abused their veto power to protect allied governments from accountability. This does even include the dozens of other initiatives that were tabled or otherwise prevented from coming up to a vote”. Virtually all of those resolutions had been below Chapter VI of the UN Charter, so these had been merely about recognizing and deploring such violations and did embrace navy intervention, sanctions, or anything, however they had been nonetheless blocked from being handed, typically by a single damaging vote, he identified. Both Moscow and Washington have basically despatched a message that their allies, equivalent to Syria and Israel respectively, can act with impunity.” “In 2002, I wrote this text (hyperlink beneath) in response to the Bush administration’s effort to justify its deliberate invasion of Iraq by emphasizing the significance of imposing UN Security Council resolutions”., in addition to the dozen or so resolutions they alleged were being violated by Iraq, a conservative estimate reveals that there are an additional 88 Security Council resolutions about countries other than Iraq that were also then being violated, said Zunes. “This raised critical questions concerning the Bush administration’s insistence that it is motivated by a responsibility to protect the credibility of the United Nations, significantly because the overwhelming majority of the governments violating these resolutions had been shut allies of the United States, which blocked the Security Council from imposing them”.The total now is closer to 100, said Zunes.Dr Courtney B. Smith, Acting Dean, School of Diplomacy at the Seton Hall University in New Jersey, told IPS the UNSC balance sheet at 75 is decidedly mixed. On high-profile issues and structural reform, the Council repeatedly falls short of hopes and expectations due to the continued willingness of members states, in particular the permanent five (the US, UK, France, China and Russia), to view the Council through the lens of nationalism and patriotism, extolling the virtues of putting their domestic interests and audiences first. “This is most vividly demonstrated within the latest posturing of the US and China throughout a variety of Council points”, said Dr. Smith who has interviewed over one hundred UN delegates and staff members for his research on the organization and its members. He said an alternate “silver lining” view of the Council is rooted in the sometimes-significant innovations in how the Council conducts its work. An expanding agenda in the post-Cold War period has been joined by informal procedural innovations designed to make the Council more transparent to non-members without compromising efficiency and effectiveness, he noted.”These developments are actually useful as a result of they supply the Council with the chance to collect extra various info from a wider vary of viewpoints, which in flip may end up in higher choices.” However, these changes do not necessarily make it any easier to make these decisions, and therein lies the cloud hovering over the Council’s political dynamics, said Dr Smith author of Politics and Process at the United Nations: The Global Dance, published by Lynne Rienner in 2006.Assessing these efforts, he argued, reveals “a story of two Councils,” one that is developing new working methods to facilitate shared interests and another that is clouded by great power disagreement. While an anniversary celebration might present an occasion to push beyond these contradictions, the current reality is that the two Councils remain firmly intertwined and that future performance will remain uneven, he added.”The final consequence might be a Council that tries desperately to stay related whereas all too typically displaying its age, which is able to trigger moments of each hope and despair for all of us who yearn for a extra strong and efficient Council within the years to return,” declared Dr SmithDr Ponzio said expanding the composition of the Security Council to align with present-day political realities and to modify the use of the Permanent-Five’s (P-5) veto authority in cases involving mass atrocity prevention is long-overdue. It is a shame, therefore, that the new UN75 Declaration’s only contribution on the matter is to simply “decide to instill new life within the discussions on the reform of the Security Council …” he mentioned.Perhaps the final actual (albeit unsuccessful) try at critical Security Council reconfiguration was in 2005 (UN60). If the worldwide political situations stay insufficient at the moment for significant change, a transitional compromise might advantage consideration. For instance, by amending Article 23 of the Charter, he mentioned, main non-permanent members could possibly be allowed to hunt election for consecutive phrases on the Council (thereby capable of pursue a type of de facto everlasting standing). Moreover, the P-5 could possibly be made extra accountable by having to publicly defend their no votes on resolutions pertaining to the implementation of the Responsibility to Protect precept.© Inter Press Service (2020) — All Rights ReservedOriginal supply: Inter Press ServiceThe place subsequent?Related News TopicsBrowse associated information matters:Latest News HeadlinesLearn the newest information tales:What UN Needs is a Cease-Fire Inside its own Security Council Thursday, September 24, 2020Why Is Women’s Leadership Not within the Headlines? 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What UN Needs is a Cease-Fire Inside its own Security Council, Inter Press Service, Thursday, September 24, 2020 (posted by Global Issues)

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