India will promote elementary values, reinforce multilateralism at UNSC: Ambassador Tirumurti

United Nations, December 31

India will promote fundamental values like human rights and development and reinforce multilateralism while underlining the need for greater cooperation in the UN Security Council, India’s envoy to the United Nations has said as the country begins its two-year tenure in the powerful organ of the world body on Friday.

Beginning January 1, India will sit in the 15-nation United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the 2021-22 term as a non-permanent member – the eighth time that the country has had a seat on the powerful horseshoe table.

“As the largest democracy…we will be promoting very fundamental values like democracy, human rights and development,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador TS Tirumurti told PTI.

India’s message will also be to ensure “how do we let diversity flourish in a united framework, which is in many ways the United Nations itself. This is something which India as a country, as what it stands for, will take to the council.

Tirumurti said India would “definitely” emphasise a greater need for cooperation in the council, which should not be a place where because of any paralysis of decision-making, urgent requirements do not get properly focused.

“We would like to have a more cooperative structure in which we genuinely look out and find solutions and go beyond the rhetoric,” the envoy said.

India will also underscore the importance of respect for rule of law and international law.

“The current multilateralism is not factoring in multi-polarity. When you have a structure, which is able to accommodate the multi-polarity in a multilateral framework, then automatically (there is) a more responsive, more rule-bound and more inclusive process,” he said, adding that this will lead to reform in the multilateral system.

“Broadly these are some of the messages which we will carry in various degrees…We will be a country which will reinforce multilateralism. That would be the biggest strength of India in many ways when it gets into the Security Council,” he said.

Tirumurti has outlined counter-terrorism, peacekeeping, maritime security, reformed multilateralism, technology for the people, women and youth and developmental issues, especially in the context of peace building, as India’s priorities for the UNSC tenure.

“I feel India’s presence in the Security Council is needed at this juncture when there are deep fissures between P-5 themselves and also between other countries. UN is losing coherence and we hope to bring this back by focusing on issues of priority to all Member States,” Tirumurti had said.

India has been at the forefront of the years-long efforts to reform the Security Council, saying it rightly deserves a place as a permanent member of the council, which in its current form does not represent the geo-political realities of the 21st century.

On the long-delayed UNSC reforms, Tirumurti criticised the lack of progress and said that hardly anything has happened in the last decade.

“Not a single thing has moved. Is this the type of process we want or can we collectively come to a slightly better process which will yield results,” he said.

He underlined that it was time for a “genuine process” wherein Member States work with a single text for negotiations.

Tirumurti also said that in the last few months, he has tried to define India’s interests a “bit more sharply”, including on the question of terrorism.

“We have said that let us pursue terrorism with a single-minded determination and not start giving excuses and justifications for these,” the Indian envoy said. PTI  

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