Timely victory: Pakistan wins two-year SC term

Timely victory: Pakistan wins two-year SC term

Hameed Shaheen

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has been elected as member of the UN Security Council for two years – 2012-13. Voting in the UN General Assembly took place earlier on Friday in UN headquarters New York. This victory at an international forum for Pakistan comes at a very crucial time back home, a moment for the 180 million Pakistanis to rejoice.

United Nations Member States, as per UN new release, voted in the General Assembly by secret ballot for five non-permanent seats divided by geographical grouping – three from the Africa and Asia-Pacific grouping, one from Eastern Europe, and one from Latin America and the Caribbean. Pakistan bagged 129 votes against its rival Kyrgystan securing 55 votes.

To win election, a country must receive a two-thirds majority of those countries present and voting, regardless of whether or not they are the only candidate in their region. Voting continues until the two-thirds threshold is reached for the required number of seats.

Guatemala received 191 votes and was duly elected to the Latin America and Caribbean seat, Assembly President Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser announced after the conclusion of the first round of voting.

Morocco received 151 votes and Pakistan received 129 votes, which means they were elected to two of the three seats allocated this year to Africa and the Asia-Pacific.

Togo (119 votes), Mauritania (98), Kyrgyzstan (55) and Fiji (one) did not receive enough votes, and a second, restricted round of voting will now take place for the third seat in that region.

In the Eastern European category, Azerbaijan received 74 votes, Slovenia picked up 67, and Hungary received 52, which means a second round of balloting must be held for that seat.

Today’s elections are being held to replace the departing members of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Gabon, Lebanon and Nigeria.

The new members will join Colombia, Germany, India, Portugal and South Africa, whose terms end on 31 December 2012, and the five permanent Council members, which each wield the power of veto – China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

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