Japan, Germany, India and Brazil Ally in UN Seat Bid
Sept. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Japan, Germany, Brazil and India said they will cooperate to persuade the United Nations to expand the Security Council for the first time and give them permanent seats on the UN's most powerful committee.
Meeting in New York, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi agreed with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to cooperate in lobbying for the change, the Japanese government said in a release.
Japan and Germany, named as enemy states by the UN after their defeat in World War II, argue they deserve permanent seats on the council because they are now the world's second- and third- biggest economies. India and Brazil say their size in their respective geographic regions qualifies them for membership.
``The time has come to make a historic decision to reform the UN, and the Security Council in particular,'' Koizumi said in a speech to the UN in New York. Japan is the second-largest contributor to the UN budget after the U.S.
The 15-member Security Council includes five permanent members -- the U.S., China, Russia, the U.K. and France -- and 10 members elected to two-year terms by the UN General Assembly. The council can order economic sanctions or military action against aggressors with the concurrence of nine members, including all five permanent members, who thus have veto power over resolutions.
The council on Saturday passed a resolution authorizing the UN to investigate whether militias backed by Sudan's government have committed genocide in Darfur. The decision also calls for more African Union troops to deploy there and threatens to impose oil-trading sanctions on Sudan unless the atrocities stop.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in December is to release a report by a panel advising on possible changes in the world body to increase cooperation in such efforts as thwarting terrorism.
Koizumi, who left Japan on Sept. 13, visited Brazil and Mexico before arriving in New York on Saturday. The Japanese leader, who also met with U.S. President George W. Bush, will return to Tokyo tomorrow.
To contact the reporter on this story:
Tim Kelly in Tokyo at firstname.lastname@example.org
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