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UNSC non-permanent seat brings cooperation chances for Vietnam: diplomat

The non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council (UNSC) will open up many opportunities for Vietnam to increase dialogue and cooperation with other countries, particularly world powers and UNSC members, according to Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga, who served as Vietnam’s permanent representative to the UN in the term 2014-2018.

Talking to the press after Vietnam was elected as a non-permanent member of the UNSC for 2020-2021 with a record vote of 192/193 on June 7, Ambassador Nga said as a UNSC member, Vietnam will have the chance to get involved in the process of building policies, making decisions and defining the rules, through which promoting the country’s stance and interest.

She noted that the UNSC, like other multilateral mechanisms, attracts constant public attention, so being a member of such a forum, the country can express its view on supporting multilateralism and its efforts to maintain peace and security and promote cooperation for settling disputes and differences on the basis of international law, thus winning approval and support of world opinion.

Therefore, Vietnam can both promote bilateral cooperation and contribute more to maintaining peace, stability and cooperation on both regional and global scales, she said.

The diplomat, who is currently President of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO), added that because Vietnam will also take the chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in 2020, the double role will facilitate Vietnam in promoting the Southeast Asian region’s interests in the UN’s agenda, particularly when another ASEAN member, Indonesia, will also serve on the UNSC in 2020. 

At the same time, Nga stressed that Vietnam will face various challenges during its term in the UNSC, the biggest of which is the great changes in world situation compared to 10 years ago when Vietnam first served in the UNSC during the 2008-2009 term. Many global problems have worsened such as armed conflicts, terrorism, territorial disputes, maritime and aviation security, water security, climate change, natural disasters, diseases, migration crisis, sustainable development and trans-national crimes.

She said world powers’ adjustment of their strategies, the rise of unilateralism and reduced commitments to the UN are posing great challenges to multilateralism and multilateral mechanisms, along with the risk of losing the achievements that were gained earlier in issues handled by the UNSC through its resolutions.

Another challenge is the complicated relations among countries and partners, Nga added.

In her view, to maintain the country’s stance and the UN’s principles, international laws and UN values while ensuring national interests and cooperative ties with other countries, Vietnam should keep close collaboration with other UNSC members, particularly nine other non-permanent members, and propose ideas on promoting dialogue to prevent disputes, seeking peaceful solutions to disputes and overcome consequences of disputes, thus contributing to building and maintaining peace, while asserting the views and voice of smaller countries in the UNSC’s activities.

By doing so, the UNSC’s operating efficiency will be improved, better serving the interests of all nations and people, according to Nga.