South Africa and Germany Elected Non-Permanent Members Of UN Security Council

By Own Correspondent – By a margin of a single vote, the German bid for a non-permanent seat on the Security Council succeeded in the first round of voting.“This vote is a sign of great confidence and of course also a gesture of faith in the work of the Federal Republic of Germany,” Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said after the election.

German Foreign Minister Westerwelle during the vote(© photothek / Trutschel)

He added that everything possible would be done in the next two years to warrant the trust that had been placed in Germany.

Voting was conducted by secret ballot, with a two-thirds majority needed for each of the seats to be filled on the Security Council. Along with Germany, Portugal and Canada applied for the two seats in the Western European and Other States Group.

After further rounds of voting, Portugal ultimately won the second seat. At the beginning of 2011 Germany and Portugal will assume the seats currently occupied by Austria and Turkey.

Along with Germany, South Africa was awarded a non-permanent seat for the second time.

“We view Security Council membership as a major responsibility as well as a major opportunity, a chance to do more for peace, security and development in the world,” Westerwelle said. The Foreign Minister added that Germany represented transparent work in the Security Council and would be an open contact partner for all members of the United Nations. “The world knows that it can rely on us,” Westerwelle said.

Westerwelle also added that Germany will use its seat to speed up the reform process of the UN security council. He said that the layout does not reflect the current state of power in the world, Africa and Latin America should be awarded a permanent seat.

Peace and security, climate protection and development, disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation: this is what German foreign policy stands for. The Federal Foreign Minister said he was pleased that this “values-based” foreign policy could now be pursued even more intensely in the Security Council.