Germany still wants permanent seat: Schroeder

5th August 2005, Comments 0 comments

5 August 2005, KASSEL, GERMANY - Germany has not given up its hopes of a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council, Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said Friday in the provincial city of Kassel.

5 August 2005

KASSEL, GERMANY - Germany has not given up its hopes of a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council, Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said Friday in the provincial city of Kassel.

He said the U.S. and Chinese rejection of the call by the Group of Four (G4) - Germany, Japan, India and Brazil - for permanent seats was to be regretted. Their objections were "unjustified", he said.

After last month's collective decision by African states, which have demanded more representation for their continent, "more time" might be needed to reach an agreement, the chancellor said as he left a meeting of senior members of his Social Democrat Party (SPD).

The German campaign for greater influence in the Security Council has also lost steam at home in recent weeks, with centre-right parties in Germany saying they do not see it as a priority.

The chancellor said Germany was entitled to a seat because it was the third-largest contributor of funding to the world body and was "unhesitatingly" providing forces for U.N. peace missions.

The African group parted company with Germany over veto rights. At a summit in Addis Ababa a month ago, the African Union (AU) demanded two African seats with full veto rights. Berlin is willing to sacrifice a veto. The 53 African votes are vital for U.N. reform.

A two-thirds majority of the 191 U.N. members is needed to pass changes.

The Group of Four has proposed expanding the Security Council from 15 to 25 seats, with six new members to be permanent ones. Beijing and Washington have combined to defeat the proposal, with the Chinese particularly hostile to a gain in Japan's status.

Schroeder also attacked the Christian Democrat alliance CDU/CSU and the Free Democrat Party (FDP) for not backing him up. He said their stance showed they were incapable of advancing Germany's national interests.

DPA

Subject: German news

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