China Calls Plan to Expand UN Security Council 'Dangerous'

China, a veto-wielding member of the U.N. Security Council, has voiced firm opposition to a plan to add more permanent members to the Council. China's ambassador called the proposal "dangerous".

Ambassador Wang Guangya suggested Thursday that China might use it's veto power to block a resolution that would create six new permanent Security Council seats.

The Chinese envoy met Secretary-General Kofi Annan to express his country's opposition to the proposal. Afterward, he told reporters the measure would divide the U.N. membership and ruin any chance for adoption of a broad reform program Mr. Annan is hoping to present to a summit of world leaders in September.

"This is a dangerous move and certainly China will oppose it… Because I think it will split the house and destroy unity and also derail the whole process of discussion on big U.N. reforms," he said.

The resolution adding permanent Council seats is being backed primarily by the so-called G-four group of candidate countries. The four -- Brazil, India, Japan and Germany, have launched a joint lobbying campaign in hopes of winning permanent Council membership. The two remaining seats would go to African countries.

A preliminary vote on the measure could come in the U.N. General Assembly this month.

Secretary-General Annan is a strong backer of enlarging the U.N.'s most powerful body. In a sweeping reform package unveiled earlier this year, he offered two expansion models. One, known as Plan A, would add permanent and non-permanent members, the other, Plan B, would create only non-permanent seats.

As he emerged from his meeting with the Chinese ambassador, Mr. Annan said he still hopes to win consensus backing for one or the other plan. He suggested he will push for a vote in the General Assembly, where a two-thirds vote of the membership is needed to start the expansion process. "I have indicated ideally consensus is what one should aim for. But if that were to fail, and there's a broad agreement, one should be able to vote," he said.

Approval of the expansion resolution is only the first step in a complicated four-stage process. It would entail election of new members by a two-thirds majority, changing the U.N. Charter's provisions on Council membership, and eventual ratification by all five permanent members.

Ambassador Wang said he does not expect the process to get that far. "I hope it will not come to the fourth stage."

When asked what he means by opposing the change, he said: "Oppose means a clear vote of 'no'".

Ambassador Wang said China favors the Plan B proposal, which would add non-permanent seats. That plan is backed by Italy, Pakistan and Mexico.

U.N. General Assembly officials say formal debate on Security Council enlargement is likely to start early this month.

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russia’s Syria Involvement Raising Concerns in Europei
Luis Ramirez
October 02, 2015 4:45 PM
European nations are joining the United States in demanding that Russia stop targeting opposition groups other than the Islamic State militants as Russian warplanes continue to conduct raids in Syria. The demand came in a statement from Britain, France, Germany, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United States Friday. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video Russia’s Syria Involvement Raising Concerns in Europe

European nations are joining the United States in demanding that Russia stop targeting opposition groups other than the Islamic State militants as Russian warplanes continue to conduct raids in Syria. The demand came in a statement from Britain, France, Germany, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United States Friday. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video First Self-Driving Truck Debuts on European Highways

The first automated semi-trailer truck started its maiden voyage Friday, Oct. 2, on a European highway. The Daimler truck called 'Actros' is the first potentially mass-produced truck whose driver will be required only to monitor the situation, similar to the role of an airline captain while the plane is in autopilot mode. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video Nano-tech Filter Cleans Dirty Water

Access to clean water is a problem for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Now, a scientist and chemical engineer in Tanzania (in East Africa) is working to change that by creating an innovative water filter that makes dirty water safe. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.

Video Demand Rising for Organic Produce in Cambodia

In Cambodia, where rice has long been the main cash crop, farmers are being encouraged to turn to vegetables to satisfy the growing demand for locally produced organic farm products. Daniel de Carteret has more from Phnom Penh.

Video Migrant Influx Costs Europe, But Economy Could Benefit

The influx of hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants is testing Europe’s ability to respond – especially in the poorer Balkan states. But some analysts argue that Europe will benefit by welcoming the huge numbers of young people – many of them well educated and willing to work. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

Video Botanists Grow Furniture, with Pruning Shears

For something a bit out of the ordinary to furnish your home, why not consider wooden chairs, crafted by nature, with a little help from some British botanists with an eye for design. VOA’s Jessica Berman reports.

Video New Fabric Helps Fight Dust-Related Allergies

Many people around the world suffer from dust-related allergies, caused mainly by tiny mites that live in bed linen. Polish scientists report they have successfully tested a fabric that is impenetrable to the microscopic creatures. VOA’s George Putic has more.

Video Burkina Faso's Economy Deeply Affected by Political Turmoil

Political turmoil in Burkina Faso over the past year has taken a toll on the economy. The transitional government is reporting nearly $70 million in losses in the ten days that followed a short-lived coup by members of the presidential guard earlier this month. The crisis shut businesses and workers went on strike. With elections on the horizon, Emilie Iob reports on what a return to political stability can do for the country's economic recovery.

Video Fleeing Violence, Some Syrians Find Refuge in Irbil

As Syrians continue to flee their country’s unrest to seek new lives in safer places, VOA Persian Service reporter Shepol Abbassi visited Irbil, where a number Syrians have taken refuge. During the religious holidy of Eid al-Adha, the city largely shut down, as temperatures soared. Amy Katz narrates his report.

Video Nigeria’s Wecyclers Work for Reusable Future in Lagos

The streets and lagoons of Africa's largest city - Lagos, Nigeria - are often clogged with trash, almost none of which gets recycled. One company is trying to change that. Chris Stein reports for VOA from Lagos.

Video Sketch Artist Helps Catch Criminals, Gives a Face to Deceased

Police often face the problem of trying to find a crime suspect based on general descriptions that could fit hundreds of people in the vicinity of the crime. In these cases, an artist can use information from witnesses to sketch a likeness that police can show the public via newspapers and television. But, as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, such sketches can also help bring back faces of the dead.

Video Thailand Set to Build China-like Internet Firewall

Thai authorities are planning to tighten control over the Internet, creating a single international access point so they can better monitor content. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Bangkok on what is being called Thailand’s own "Great Firewall."

Video Croatian Town’s War History Evokes Empathy for Migrants

As thousands of Afghanistan, Iraqi and Syrian migrants pass through Croatia, locals are reminded of their own experiences with war and refugees in the 1990s. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from the town of Vukovar, where wartime scars still are visible today.

Video Long Drought Affecting California’s Sequoias

California is suffering under a historic four-year drought and scientists say even the state's famed sequoia trees are feeling the pain. The National Park Service has started detailed research to see how it can help the oldest living things on earth survive. VOA’s George Putic reports.

VOA Blogs