H.E. Dr. Zahir Tanin
Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the United Nations
Chair of Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform
It is a pleasure to welcome you all here today after what many noted during the recent General Assembly Plenary debate on the Security Council reform to be a long absence of intergovernmental negotiations meetings. I also wish to thank the President of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Nassir Al-Nasser, for his strong commitment to furthering the agenda of reform and his support for and trust in my efforts.
In the time since we last met, on the 2nd of March this year, we have seen a number of Member States initiatives take shape. I have continued to discuss the way forward and these initiatives with any and all member states or groups who have requested meetings.
-In light of my ongoing consultations, it became clear to me that the time was ripe to bring these initiatives into the Intergovernmental Negotiations. Therefore, I called the first meeting of the eighth round of negotiations in order to move the process forward in an open, inclusive, and transparent manner.
– As mentioned in my letter on the 10th of November, in this round we have available to us the Member State initiatives I circulated on the 9th of September. This session provides an opportunity for you to reflect on these initiatives, and share your responses. Authors of these initiatives are invited to indicate how they could be further operationalized in order to continue to move the process towards decisive progress. All other distinguished delegates are also welcome to express their views and thoughts in exploring a combination of, or a balance between, different elements of the proposals.
-You may also draw inspiration from the third revision of the text, as it encompasses all the positions submitted to me by you, the member states. Rev 3 will continue to add to an increased understanding of the positions on the table.
-Now is your time to express your current views and help shape the process. Many of you continue to express that you wish to see the wider membership becoming more creative, more flexible, and more engaged in a real negotiation rather than restating positions. This is your opportunity to do so.
-Discussions in hallways or outside of the UN have their place, but ultimately reform needs to happen here; in the end, we all come to these Intergovernmental Negotiations to take the next steps forward together.
-I remain, as chair, impartial to any position, yet partial to progress, and ready to listen to you all as we begin the eighth round.