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Statement by DPR Mr. Gert Auväärt at the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform, 30 January 2019


Please allow me to wish the Permanent Representatives of UAE and Luxembourg success in bringing this negotiations process forward. We are all convinced that the United Nations has to be fit for purpose to face the challenges of 21st century. The reform process should help the Security Council to live up to its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security in such manner, which is expected from us by our citizens.

As a member of the ACT group, Estonia also supports 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. We welcome the wide support expressed by the Member States for the code of conduct. Hopefully more countries will be lending their support to the code.

Estonia has also expressed 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. We strongly support the initiative by France and Mexico in that regard. We have had to witness, how some members of the Council have used or threatened to use the veto leaving the Council paralyzed and unable to react to situations where action is needed the most.

Regarding the work of the Security Council we should also reflect on the agendas and substantial matters discussed in the SC meetings. The notion of peace and security is expanding, there are new challenges which can severely hinder global peace and security and which therefore should be debated in the Security Council. For example climate change and cyber security are two clear examples of such challenges of growing importance and urgency.

Regarding the possible expansion of the Security Council, the UN must adapt to the realities of current times. Estonia believes that every country, small or big, should have the opportunity to be represented on the Council but a stronger voice of small nations, especially the Small Island Developing States, is vital. We also fully empathize with African common position, which would increase representativeness and legitimacy of the UN as a whole and is the only way to rectify the historical injustice endured by the African continent with regards to the composition of the Security Council.
Estonia would like to see greater accountability, coherence, and transparency of the Council’s activities through increased inclusiveness and targeted action. Small steps in improving the working methods of the Council can bring along a much wider positive effect. A better communication between the Council and the General Assembly could be one manifestation of such approach. The Security Council should be kept accountable by all the UN member states, by ensuring more transparency in its actions and more cohesiveness in deeds and decisions. It is a shortcoming of the Council that its Rules of Procedure are still provisional. It is very much up to the Council members to make use of the existing procedures and different outreach formats of the Council to achieve a better outcome of their work.
In conclusion, I would like to reconfirm Estonia’s commitment to engage constructively in the IGN to continue moving the reform process forward.


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