US stop short of backing Security Council seat for India

June 2nd, 2010 - 10:25 am ICT by IANS  

By Arun Kumar
Washington, June 1 (IANS) The United States has stopped short of supporting India’s permanent membership of the UN Security Council saying India would play a central part in its reforms, but US wants it done preserving its effectiveness.

“India’s evolving role in global affairs underscores the fact that India is going to have a very important part to play in any consideration of reform of the UN Security Council,” US Undersecretary of State William Burns said Tuesday ahead of the India-US strategic dialogue starting Wednesday.

Security Council reform is “an issue that needs to be addressed to reflect the realities of 2010,” he said when asked after an address at the Council on Foreign Relations, a Washington think tank, whether the US supported India’s permanent membership in the top UN policy making organ.

“Obviously we want to preserve the effectiveness of the Security Council,” Burns said. But the Obama “administration has made clear not only its openness to reform but also some expansion of the Security Council,” he said.

“I think it’s an important issue for the US to address and I think India is very much going to be part of the process,” Burns repeated time and again in response to persistent questioning whether the US backed permanent Security Council membership for India.

“We have already seen considerable movement in a number of other areas,” he said pointing to the emergence of G-20 in the wake of the global financial crisis without expressing US support in so many words.

US also recognised that realities of 1945 do not apply, Burns said. “That means countries like India and other countries we need very much to consider how their increasing role in global affairs is matched by the responsibilities they can discharge in respect of important parts of that architecture.”

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in )

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