US resolution seeks Security Council membership for India

February 21st, 2008 - 1:25 pm ICT by admin  

By Parveen Chopra
Washington, Feb 21 (IANS) A Congressman has moved a resolution in the US House of Representatives asking the United Nations to admit India as a permanent member of the Security Council. Gus Bilirakis, Republican from Florida and a member of the house committee on foreign affairs, introduced H. Res. 638 expressing the sense of the House that the UN should take the procedural actions necessary to amend Article 23 of the Charter to add India’s name to the five permanent council members - US, Russia, China, France and Britain.

Thaddeus McCotter, Republican member of the house from Michigan, is a co-sponsor of the resolution.

“India is an important ally of the US and the world community. Their enormous role in mediating and contributing to global peacekeeping missions combined with their ever-evolving economic prowess and democratic institutions makes them a natural fit as a permanent member of the Security Council,” Congressman Bilirakis said.

In an op-ed piece in the Washington Times Wednesday, Bilirakis has made a strong case for India’s admission to the elite club of five nations charged with the role of maintaining international peace and security.

Pushing India’s case, he argues, is also in the interest of the US.

The five permanent members created by the Allies after Word War II no longer reflect today’s global landscape radically transformed by global economic and security power realignments, Bilirakis wrote in the article.

“Power is diffused and Islamic extremists pose a worldwide threat to moderate governments and democracy. The new foreign policy imperatives of democratic nations are to counter the rise of extremism and roll back global poverty through economic opportunity and enhanced political freedom,” he pointed out.

Adding the voice of the world’s largest democracy India to the deliberations of the Security Council would be a major improvement to an organisation too often paralysed by the intransigence of anti-democratic members, he said.

“Moreover, in meeting its mandate of maintaining world peace and enforcing UN decisions, the Security Council must have members with advanced force capacity and proven military leadership, most especially ones tempered by a belief in democratic principles like those practised by the people of India,” the Congressman continued.

“Rather than remaining on the sidelines when it comes to implementing reform at the UN, the US and likeminded nations should actively advocate reform of the UN Security Council, beginning with permanent membership for the world’s largest democracy: India,” he added.

Bilirakis lists another reason why the US should push India’s case. “It is a crucial and proven partner in the global war on terror and is strategically located to combat growing Islamist extremism in South Asia,” he pointed out.

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