Thursday, 17 October 2013 14:12

For the first time in history Lithuania elected to UN Security Council

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UN Security Council Chamber in New York UN Security Council Chamber in New York

Twenty two years after Lithuania’s membership in United Nations, Lithuania was elected today to the United Nations Security Council with the majority of votes.

187 countries voted in favor of Lithuania.

Winning a Security Council seat requires a two-thirds majority in the 193-nation General Assembly.

The vote was held in New York at UN headquarters, where five new non-permanent members of the Security Council were elected.

Ten rotating spots for the Security Council are chosen from within the five regional groups into which the U.N. is divided: Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin American and the Caribbean, and the Western Europe and Others group.

Although Lithuania seemed to be heading for a “clean slate” election as sole candidate for its respective Eastern Europe regional group, securing a council seat was not easy.

Many in Lithuania remember the painful country's defeat last year during the vote for the post of the President of the United Nations General Assembly, when a Lithuanian candidate lost to then Serbia's Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic only by 14 votes.
Russia forcefully supported Jeremic in this diplomatic competition and Russia’s support was the key to Jeremic's victory.
Now some feared that Russia could again impede Lithuania’s bid for the UN Security Council, especially in the light of present tensions between the two countries after Russia halted Lithuania dairy imports in a trade row.

Lithuania has never been the member of the UN Security Council.

The election of Lithuania to the UN Security Council was received in Lithuania as a great diplomatic success.
According to the UN Charter, Security Council is the main body responsible for the protection of peace and security in the world.

Now it will require from Lithuania utmost diplomatic and political efforts to contribute actively to solving tricky international peace and security questions.

In a presentation making the case for Lithuania’s UN Security Council bid, Lithuania stated:

"Lithuania strongly supports United Nations activities in the fields of the maintenance of international peace and security, international humanitarian law, arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation, sustainable economic development, good governance, security, and the promotion and protection of human rights, including the protection of women’s rights and support for women’s empowerment.

Lithuania favours a continued revitalisation and reform of the United Nations and its main bodies, in order to strengthen the Organisation’s ability to address existing and emergent challenges, and threats to international peace, security and development."


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