Kuwait calls for UNSC transparency, end to veto on crimes against humanity

Feb 7, 2018
By Arul Louis
Kuwait has called for more transparency in the working of the Security Council and asked its permanent members to refrain from using their veto rights on issues relating to crimes against humanity.
Permanent members should not use their veto powers in matters involving crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide or humanitarian issues like relief operations and evacuations, Kuwait's Permanent Representative Mansour A.Alotaibi told the session  on the working methods of the Security Council that he convened on Tuesday as the president of the highest UN decision-making body.
Alotaibi, told the Council that the “abuse of veto” by certain countries has hindered the maintenance of international peace and security, which is the Council's primary task.
“Some countries have used the veto to protect their own interests or their allies',” he said.
Alotaibi is also the chair of the Security Council Working Group on Documentation and Other Procedural Questions, which seeks to improve its functioning and transparency.
He said that there was a need for more transparency in the working of the Council as opaqueness limits its effectiveness.
Kuwait advocates more transparency in the functioning of the Council.
Alotaibi noted that Kuwait is a member of the Accountability, Coherence, and Transparency (ACT) Group made up of more that 20 member countries that works to improve the functioning of the Council, which has a tendency to sometimes operate in secrecy and fail act because of dissensions among permanent members.
He also commended efforts to involve NGOs and outside experts in briefings to the Council and to make it more open to the General Assembly.
The Council should also seek the opinion and participation of member countries when its decisions would directly affect them, he added.
He invited Ian Martin, the Executive Director of Security Council Report, an independent research organisation to brief Tuesday's session on improving the efficacy of the body.
Alotaibi, who is also the chair of the Council committee that oversees the sanctions on the Democratic Republic of Congo, said that the body functions openly and the nations affected by it attend its meetings.
Although he did not diplomatically name any countries that abuse the veto rights, Russia has stopped several resolutions against Syria, with China joining in on some measures. China's veto threats have also blocked resolutions on North Korea being shelved. 

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