NEW YORK: Malaysia has returned to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) after a 15-year absence with an absolute victory.
Of the 192 votes cast at the UN General Assembly here Thursday, 187 was in support of Malaysia’s unopposed candidacy to represent the Asia Pacific region.
The results were a culmination of months of intense lobbying by Wisma Putra to clinch one of the five arising vacancies of the total 10 non-permanent seats.
Malaysia had officially put in its bid for the seat soon after completing its last two-year UNSC term in 1999.
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman immediately pledged to honour the commitments Malaysia had made in the run-up to the vote, saying he was humbled by the trust and solidarity demonstrated by the larger UN membership in supporting Malaysia’s UNSC bid.
“The number of votes received bears testimony to Malaysia’s long-standing reputation as a responsible member of the international community, particularly in the context of international peace and security.
“We reaffirm the pledge to work together with other Council members, the wider UN membership as well as with other partners and stakeholders in fulfilling the mandate of the Council and in upholding the Charter of the United Nations for the common good of all.
“The resounding number of votes provides Malaysia with a solid platform of support and credibility as it embarks on its membership of the Security Council.
“At this stage, I wish to also express Malaysia’s deep appreciation for the endorsements by members of regional groupings in particular by Asean, by the Asia Pacific Group and by the Gulf Cooperation Council.
“These endorsements were instrumental in boosting Malaysia’s chances of being supported by other regional groups which is reflected in the outcome of the elections,” he told Malaysian journalists covering the UNSC vote.
This will be Malaysia’s fourth term in the 15-member UNSC. Malaysia previously sat as a non-permanent member in 1965, 1989/90 and 1998/99.
The vote on Thursday was for five of the 10 non-permanent UNSC seats for the 2015-2016 term.
The other victors were Angola (190 votes), Venezuela (181) and New Zealand (145).
Turkey and Spain failed to get the two-thirds majority required. There will be one more round of voting to decide whether it will be Spain or Turkey.Anifah listed Malaysia priorities in the UNSC as continuing to advocate a vision for peace and moderation, promote mediation as an approach towards peaceful conflict resolution, promoting the enhancement of peacekeeping operations, promoting peace-building through technical support for countries emerging from conflict; and encouraging continued discussion on reform of the UNSC.
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