Saudi Arabia withraws its membership from UN Security Council
Newscast Media NEW YORK—Saudi Arabia has refused to take its seat as a member of the UN Security Council on the grounds the body is unable to end wars and resolve conflicts. It was chosen to be one of five new non-permanent members on Thursday.
Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Friday announcing it had turned down membership of the UN Security Council a day after it was elected as a new non-permanent member. The ministry cited the body’s “double standards” as justification for the move.
“The kingdom sees that the method and work mechanism and the double standards in the Security Council prevent it from properly shouldering its responsibilities towards world peace,” the statement carried by Saudi state news agency SPA said. It pointed specifically to the civil war in Syria, in which it is a fervent supporter of rebel forces, and the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
“Failing to find a solution to the Palestinian cause for 65 years,” it said, has led to “numerous wars that have threatened world peace.”
Moreover, “allowing the regime in Syria to kill its own people with chemical weapons…without confronting it or imposing any deterrent sanctions … is a proof of the inability of the Security Council to carry out its duties and assume its responsibilities.”
The ministry also criticized the council’s failure to rid the Middle East of weapons of mass destruction, namely nuclear weapons – in reference to Iran and Israel. It said reforms needed to be introduced before it would consider taking its seat, although did not specify changes it felt were necessary.
Despite the lack of a contest, there was disapproval from human rights groups over the appointment of Saudi Arabia as well as Chad and Nigeria.
“The prestige of a seat at the world’s foremost diplomatic table should prompt the new members to get their house in order,” Human Rights Watch’s UN director Philippe Bolopion said Thursday.
Source: Radio Deutsche Welle