500+ participants / 80+ speakers / 20+ panels


Day 2

09:00 – 10:00

Can a Divided UN Security Council Still Fulfil its Mandate in the Current Polarised World?

The current structure of the UN Security Council, with its five permanent members holding the veto power, reflects the power structure of the world as it was in 1945.  Until now, the only significant reform of the UNSC occurred in 1965, when the number of its non-permanent members increased from six to 10. Historically, various proposals have been put forward, including by the G4 nations (Brazil, Germany, India and Japan), calling for the extension of permanent membership with veto rights to these four countries, to allow for a more equitable representation within the Security Council. Other proposals – such as the latest 2022 Liechtenstein resolution, which required the five permanent members of the Security Council to justify their use of the veto – all proposed alternatives to the G4-favoured reform. Russia’s military aggression on Ukraine has sharpened the profound cleavages between the permanent members of the UNSC and exposed more vividly some of the weaknesses of the UN Security Council that have been criticised for decades. What solutions have been found for the UNSC to keep functioning in such a polarised environment and continue fulfilling its mandate, albeit only in part? What opportunities has this situation created, including for the elected members of the UNSC? Is the current crisis an opportunity to make the UN General Assembly more influential? This panel will discuss the current challenges and proposals for the reform of the UNSC, as well as the positions of the UN members towards them, all with the purpose of thinking through a new UNSC fit for the 21st century.

Thomas Gürber
Karin Landgren
Božena Forštnarič Boroje
Gazmend Turdiu
Annelies Verstichel




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