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Statement by H.E. Mr. Sven Jürgenson, Permanent Representative of Estonia to the UN, at the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform, 7 March 2017

07.03.2017

Distinguished Co-Chairs,
 
Thank you for convening today’s informal meeting of the General Assembly on the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform that focuses on the question of regional representation, categories of membership and the question of the veto. As general remarks about the reform process were made by my delegation during the first IGN meeting on the 6th of February, I would like to make the following points today.
 
Firstly, Estonia has expressed before and continues to highlight its position, that permanent members of the Security Council should voluntarily and collectively commit themselves to not using their veto to block Council action aimed at preventing or ending situations involving mass atrocity crimes. Estonia is member of the ACT group. So we are strong supporters of the code of conduct calling for all members of the Council not to vote against credible Security Council resolutions that are aimed at preventing or ending genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Estonia has also reiterated its support to the initiative by France and Mexico to regulate the use of the veto in the case of the most serious crimes as defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. These two initiatives are complementary and share a common goal. Where national or regional mechanisms fail to protect the people, decisive and timely Security Council action is crucial to prevent or stop these crimes. 
 
Secondly, it is essential that the Security Council is involved in the maintenance of peace and sustainable development in all parts of the world. Estonia believes that in order to better accomplish this aim the council has to reflect the realities of our current world. Stronger voice of small and medium sized nations and the adequate regional representation in the Council is absolutely vital. Estonia believes that every country, small or big, should have the opportunity to be represented on the Council. So in this regard we hope that for example small Member States and especially Small Island Developing States will be adequately and continuously represented in the Security Council in the closest future. 
 
In conclusion, distinguished co-chairs, let me assure you that Estonia values greatly your leadership in guiding the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council reform during the 71st session of the General Assembly. 
 
I thank you.
 

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