Thank you for giving us the opportunity today to hear an exchange of views on the question of regional representation. Broad representation from all regions of the world lends legitimacy to the Security Council. With elected members from all regions, the Council can make informed decisions and ensure broad support for its decisions among all Members of the United Nations.
At our first exchange, we expressed our openness to the idea of enlargement in both the permanent and non-permanent category, and to assess various interim solutions. An enlarged Security Council must also be a more representative Council. The composition of the Council should better reflect the current configuration of the membership of the United Nations, including developing states and smaller states. Norway has consistently supported proposals to redress the under-representation of African and Latin-American and Caribbean countries.
While equitable geographic representation remains an important principle in the distribution of non-elected seats among regional groups, we should not forget that the Charter pays special regard to the contribution of Members States to the maintenance of international peace and security and to other purposes of the Organization. Many smaller states make significant contributions to the United Nations, out of all proportion to their size.
We have heard proposals calling for regional seats, and for regional rotation and regional accountability. We maintain that only States can be members of the United Nations. We encourage States to consult with other members of their regional group and to ensure broad respect for the decisions of the Council. But it remains an open question how States could represent entire groups. We note that several groups are united in their demand for greater representation, but that there is no agreement as to which States could best represent them.
Reforming the Security Council requires broadening its legitimacy among all Member States. We must ensure the proper representation of those countries which have so far been under-represented, but without undermining the sovereign equality of all member states.
Thank you, Mr Chairman.