Israel to Run for Security Council Seat in 2019
Israel plans to run for a rotating seat on the UN Security Council for the first time ever for 2019-2020, its envoy said on Thursday.
"We're going all out to win," Ambassador Ron Prosor told the Reuters news agency, adding, "It's about time."
Prosor said Israel will be vying against Germany and Belgium for two seats allotted to the "Western European and Others Group." Technically Israel should be a member of the Asia-Pacific Group but has been blocked from that group by Muslim states.
Winning a Security Council seat requires a two-thirds majority in the 193-nation General Assembly, and UN diplomats predicted that it will not be easy for the Israel to win.
Israel has occasionally held posts as vice president of the UN General Assembly but it has never been a member of the Security Council, although nations which violate its citizens’ rights and are a security threat to other countries, such as Syria and Iran, have.
The Security Council the most powerful and prestigious body at the United Nations with the authority to impose sanctions or authorize the use of military force to enforce its decisions.
Diplomats told Reuters that most members of the 120 non-aligned bloc of developing nations are either cool or openly hostile towards Israel, adding that General Assembly votes on issues related to Israel and the Palestinian Authority are usually unfavorable for the Israelis.
The Security Council comprises five permanent and 10 rotating members, elected by the General Assembly for two-year terms and chosen from regional groups. The five permanent veto-wielding members are the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China.
General Assembly elections for next year's Security Council will be on October 17.
In May it was reported that Israel had issued a formal complaint against Germany for blocking it from serving on the UN Security Council in 2018.
Israel, it was reported at that time, was in a good position of winning the 2018 spot until Germany decided to vie for the same spot as well.
The Foreign Ministry said that Israel and Germany had an agreement in which Germany said it would not run, but the agreement was being breached.