|Statement by Ambassador Li Baodong at the Security Council Open Debate on the Working Methods of the Security Council|
I welcome India’s initiative in convening today’s meeting on the working methods of the Security Council. Today’s meeting — the fifth open debate convened by the Council on this issue — fully reflects the importance the Council has attached to the issue of improving its working methods and shows the attention the Council gives to the opinions of Member States.
I listened attentively to the statement by the Permanent Representative of Portugal, and I wish to acknowledge Portugal’s efforts as Chair of the Security Council’s Informal Working Group on Documentation and Other Procedural Questions.
China also supports, and attaches importance to, the continuous improvement of the Council’s working methods so as to enhance the authority, efficiency and transparency of the Council and allow it to better implement the mandate conferred upon it by the Charter of the United Nations. Thanks to the considered efforts of Council members, the Council has made much progress in terms of improving its working methods.
The number of open meetings of the Council has increased significantly. The monthly briefing to non-Council members by the Council’s rotating presidency on the monthly programme of work has become a well-established practice. The Security Council has effectively utilized various formats, such as informal interactive dialogues and Arria Formula meetings, to strengthen its exchange and interaction with relevant Member States, country configurations of the Peace building Commission, civil society and academic institutions. The annual joint meetings between the Security Council and the Peace and Security Council of the African Union have served to strengthen cooperation with regional organizations in Africa.
With the assistance of the Secretariat, various information and communication technologies have been extensively applied to the Council’s work, allowing it to respond more quickly and promptly to emerging developments and allowing non-Council members to find out about Council activities on a more timely basis. The revamped official website of the Security Council now provides more information to its users.
The Charter of the United Nations provides that the Security Council shall adopt its own rules of procedure. There is still room for improvement with regard to the working methods of the Council. China supports the full implementation of presidential note 507 (S/2010/507) on that issue and supports the continued discussion on concrete proposals and measures. I would like to focus on and highlight the following points.
First, over recent years, the workload of the Council has increased continuously. The Council should focus on using its existing resources effectively and on dealing with major, urgent issues that threaten international peace and security. The number of thematic subjects it addresses has also been increasing continuously. Some of them are beyond the scope of the mandate of the Security Council, and the Council should pay attention to the concern expressed by Member States in that regard.
Secondly, the Security Council should pay more attention to preventive diplomacy and use peaceful means such as mediation and good offices to defuse disputes and should avoid the frequent use or threat of sanctions and other measures of force. An effective mechanism to monitor the implementation of the Council’s mandates should be established so as to avoid acts that abuse or overstep them.
Thirdly, before adopting resolutions or agreeing on presidential statements, the Council should carry out, in a full and patient manner, negotiations and consultations so as to reach extensive and broad consensus. In that process, it is important that all Council members begiven adequate time to consider and study texts. The Council should avoid forcing through texts over which there remain serious differences, so as to safeguard the solidarity of the Council.
Fourthly, the Security Council should continue to strengthen its interaction and dialogue with non-Council members and pay more attention to the opinions of relevant Member States that are connected to the Council’s agenda. We support the full utilization by the Council of various mechanisms such as the Working Group on Peacekeeping Operations and meetings with troop-contributing countries (TCCs). With regard to deploying peacekeeping operations and adjusting their mandates, more attention should be given to communication between TCCs and the Secretariat.
Fifthly, the Security Council, the General Assembly and the Peace building Commission should fully respect the division of labour, on the one hand, and strengthen the communication and coordination among them, on the other. China supports the Council’s efforts in accordance with Chapter VIII of the Charter to strengthen its cooperation with regional organizations such as the African Union and the League of Arab States so as to achieve synergy.
Thank you, Mr. President.