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Statement by Ambassador Li Baodong at the Security Council Open Debate on Working Methods

2010-04-22 23:14

Mr. President,

At the outset, I wish to thank you for facilitating this open debate and I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the member states for their care and support for the work of the Security Council.

(Photograph by Bai Jie/Xinhua News Agency)

Mr. President,

The Charter of the United Nations has entrusted the Security Council with the solemn responsibility of maintaining international peace and security. In the current complex international situation fraught with all kinds of security challenges and with expectations high on the part of the member states, the Security Council finds itself facing colossal tasks.

In recent years, the Council, while working to fulfill its responsibilities, has made active efforts to improve its working methods and enhance the transparency of its work. The Informal Working Group on Documentation and Procedures has carried out fruitful work and the President's Note (S/2006/507) marked an important step towards further improvement of the rules and regulations of the Security Council. UN member states have also raised many constructive views and proposals on the issue. We should build on the results achieved so far, base ourselves on reality and continue to tap potentials for the improvement of the Council's working methods so as to make the work of the Security Council more equitable, more efficient and more transparent. I believe that we should focus our efforts on the following aspects:

Firstly, widely seek the views of non-Council members and strengthen communication and interaction with them. Useful practices in this regard include monthly briefing by the Presidency of the Security Council to non-Council members and dialogue with troop contributing countries. We hope that the Council fully hears the views and proposals of the member states and we also hope that the latter will make the best use of the occasions such as open meetings and meetings with troop contributing countries to air their views so that the Council is informed of their valuable opinions.

Secondly, pay attention to practical results in the enhancement of transparency. Efforts to enhance transparency should lay emphasis on the participation of member states and practical results achieved instead of becoming a matter of formality. Open meetings are more transparent with greater participation of member states. As such, they offer an important platform for non-Council members to participate in the work of the Council. We hope that open meetings will be more result oriented so that non-Council members are given an opportunity to present their views and proposals. The themes of open meetings should have a greater focus and should not be too general.

Thirdly, focus our energy on addressing major and urgent threats to international peace and security. We support the Informal Working Group on Documentation and Procedures in reviewing on a yearly basis items on the Council's agenda in order to make the agenda up to date, save resources and increase efficiency. Recent years have seen an excessive increase of thematic items, some of which even go beyond the sphere of competence of the Council. Such a trend should be a matter of concern for member states.

Fourthly, further improve the timeliness and quality of Council documents. The surge of the quantity of documents adopted by the Security Council in recent years demonstrates the increase of the work load of the Council, but on the other hand, it also serves as a reminder that greater attention should be given to the quality of the documents and their practical implementation. Reports of the Secretary-General should strive to be more targeted and timely so as to become "living documents" that really reflect problems and present recommendations. Timely availability of relevant documents in all six working languages of the United Nations should also receive enough attention as an important step in enhancing the transparency and openness of the Security Council.

Mr. President,

Improving the working methods of the Security Council is a long-term task that cannot be accomplished at one go. We are willing to work with others in making unremitting efforts in this regard. We are convinced that with continuous improvement of its working methods and incessant innovation of its practice, the Security Council will be able to better fulfill its mission entrusted by the UN member states.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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