14 October 2010
South Africa has thanked the international community for having confidence in the country after being re-elected as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for 2011-12.
South Africa, which first served on the council in 2007/08 period, was elected alongside Germany, India, Colombia and Portugal, receiving 182 votes in the 192-member UN General Assembly in New York on Tuesday.
Each non-permanent country sits on the council for two years alongside the permanent powers – Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States – who have the right to veto any council resolution.
“This election indicates the UN’s confidence in South Africa as a global player, and is the outcome of many years of hard work by this government to ensure that the developing world has a strong voice in the United Nations,” government spokesperson Themba Maseko said on Thursday.
International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane thanked the SADC, the African Union and United Nations’ member states, saying this proved the country’s ability to advance the African agenda of achieving peace, security and development, including respect for human rights.
“South Africa is humbled and at the same time delighted by the overwhelming support it received from the member states of the United Nations during these elections,” Nkoana-Mashabane said.
“We pledge our commitment to promoting effective partnership between the UN and regional and sub-regional organisations, in particular the African Union Peace and Security Council, in the maintenance of international peace and security.”
Nkoana-Mashabane said the country would continue to work towards improving the working methods of the UNSC in order to make it more legitimate, representative and effective.
“We will be among those who promote greater consultation with member states in the conduct of the work of the council,” the minister said.