Statement by Ambassador Jürgen Schulz in the Intergovernmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform

Feb 7, 2017

Thank you Co-Chairs,

I would like to respond to the “elements of discussion” you have presented yesterday. 

Firstly, Germany agrees with you that the ---principles— of the IGN are already laid out in decision 62/557. We do not need anything further with regard to guiding principles. We agree that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. So real negotiations can begin now without anyone having to be anxious that his views are not sufficiently taken into consideration.

While we underscore that 122 submissions to the Framework Document are more than a critical mass necessary for text-based negotiations, we agree that it would be helpful to also have the positions of those Member States on board that have not contributed them to the Framework Document so far. We therefore welcome your invitation that they should make their voices heard and state their positions.

Secondly, at the same time we wonder why those who express the most normal request at the UN – co-chairs to present a text for negotiations – have to bear the burden of proof. Yesterday we have listened very attentively to statements from countries and groups representing around 130 countries. More than 100 countries represented by those who spoke yesterday asked the co-chairs to immediately start text-based negotiations. This is a very strong and important signal.

Thirdly, in our view most aspects of the dozen “elements of discussion” you provided yesterday are “elements of negotiations”. They cannot be resolved now, before the start of real negotiations - they must be the very essence of the textbased negotiations a vast majority of us have been calling for. 

Fourthly, we are convinced that without a text we run the risk of re-living a debate which we have had several times before. We hear arguments that have been exchanged many times in the past. And again, we witness the existence of many convergences in the positions of many Member States across all five pillars of Security Council Reform. This repetition without action must end. We must break out of the endless cycle that led us to a standstill. What is necessary to break out of this futile cycle and to initiate action is a text – a text to be applied in text-based negotiations in the IGN. The foundations for these have been laid in the 69th General Assembly.

And here, esteemed Co-Chairs, comes my request: in our view, it is your responsibility to elaborate and present such a text for text-based negotiations, which Germany is very much looking forward to. Thank you!

© GermanyUN