Saturday, April 18, 2015

Ambassador Tanin is appointed again as Chair of the intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform

H.E. Dr. Zahir Tanin, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the United Nations as Chairman of the ongoing intergovernmental negotiations on Security Council reform.

In a letter sent today, H.E. Mr. Ali Abdessalam Treki, President of the 64th General Assembly appointed the Ambassador as chairman, thanked him for accepting the responsibility and requested that member states “continue to extend [their]full cooperation and support to the process of Security Council reform.”

Ambassador Tanin has chaired the intergovernmental negotiations process since the process began last February, as mandated by a decision of the General Assembly. Since then, Ambassador Tanin has overseen three rounds of negotiations.

The first round included five exchanges, one on each of the five key issues: categories of membership; the question of the veto; regional representation; size of an enlarged Security Council and working methods of the Council; and the relationship between the Council and the General Assembly. The second round included three exchanges: the first on the concept of review or challenge; the second on the composition of the Council; and the third on voting, procedures and working methods of the Council. Finally, the third round included three exchanges; the first on all five key issues together; the second on the model including expansion in both categories of membership (permanent and non-permanent); and the third on the “intermediate model.”

As a result of the efforts of the Afghan Permanent Representative, member states moved forward with confidence in the process. Significant percentages of the membership participated in each of the three rounds, and member states from all interest groups were able to air their views freely. At the end of the session, President Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann sent a letter to President Karzai, thanking him for allowing Ambassador Tanin to take on this important role, and expressing his appreciation for the work that Ambassador Tanin accomplished over the course of the year.

In September 2009, the General Assembly took a unanimous decision to continue the intergovernmental negotiations during the 64th General Assembly. The President of the General Assembly’s reappointment of Ambassador Tanin ensures that the process will have continuity and will retain the spirit of transparency and openness that categorized its first year. In the near future, Ambassador Tanin will continue negotiations with an aim to finding a solution on the reform of the Security Council that can garner the widest possible political agreement from Member States.

Ambassador Dr. Tanin condemned the Terrorist Attacks outside Indian Embassy

Ambassador Zahir Tanin today condemned the terrorist attack that occurred this morning outside the Indian Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan before he delivered a statement to the Third Committee. A suicide car bomb explosion was responsible for killing 15 civilians and two Afghan police officers, and injuring over eighty.

After condemning the attack, Ambassador Dr. Tanin said, “This was an obvious attack on civilians. The perpetrators of this attack and those who planned it are vicious terrorist who target innocent people, not just Afghan civilians but also our friends and allies.” The Taliban have claimed responsibility for this act, but did not say why they targeted the Indian Embassy. Ambassador Dr. Tanin said, “I want to extend my and my governments heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the families of the victims.”

Vital for Afghan election results to be certified and accepted by all, says Ban

As Afghanistan and its international partners continue to await the final results of last month’s elections, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stressed the importance of ensuring that the outcome reflects the will of the people.

Mr. Ban and his top envoy in Afghanistan, Kai Eide, have in recent weeks called on national election authorities to ensure the integrity of the 20 August presidential and provincial council elections, in light of concerns that have arisen over irregularities in voting.

“The level of alleged electoral irregularities has generated significant political turbulence leading to fears of a return to violence when election results are announced,” Mr. Ban wrote in his latest report on the situation in Afghanistan.

He said that serious electoral fraud occurred, made possible primarily, but not exclusively, by the lack of access to parts of the country owing to the ongoing conflict.

Following a decision by the Electoral Complaints Commission to review results from a number of polling stations, a credible audit and recount process is now coming to its conclusion, he said.

“When the entire electoral process is completed, it will be of critical importance for the results to be accepted by all so that the election of Afghanistan’s future president can be certified and a new Government can be formed,” stated Mr. Ban.

Forty-one presidential candidates, including two women, as well as over 3,000 candidates competing for provincial council seats, took part in the elections – the first to be organized by the Independent Election Commission (IEC) and described by Mr. Ban as having been “among the most demanding ever to be organized.”

The Secretary-General also stated that it is “imperative” that the international community maintain a long-term commitment to Afghanistan, while adding that there must be a “decisive shift” in that relationship.

“The Government must be enabled and determined to assume all the responsibilities that belong to a sovereign State,” he said. “The international community, for its part, must play a role that is clearly one of support.

“A new contract between the Government of Afghanistan and its people will be a critical component in this shift of responsibilities,” he added.

Strategic Communication and Spokespersons Unit
United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA)
Kabul, Afghanistan