S. Korea wins seat on U.N. Security Council for 2024-25
As the only candidate nation in Asia, Seoul was chosen in a vote at the U.N. General Assembly in New York, returning to the UNSC in 11 years after last sitting on the council in 2013-14, Yonhap reports.
South Korea won the seat after garnering 180 votes among 192 member states during the assembly.
Speaking to reporters, South Korean Ambassador to the U.N. Hwang Joon-kook said he was very pleased to see the support of many member countries in the election.
«We will do our best to contribute to world peace, freedom and prosperity through diplomacy based on universal values, the principles of the U.N. Charter and by expanding cooperation with developing countries,» he said.
This marks the third time for South Korea to serve as one of the 10 nonpermanent UNSC members. It previously served in the seat during the 1996-97 term.
The election came as North Korea has recently ramped up developments of its nuclear and missile programs. Last week, the North launched what it claimed to be a satellite-carrying rocket, a move denounced by Washington and other countries as a violation of UNSC resolutions banning any launch using ballistic missile technology.
The council, the U.N.'s most powerful body that can make legally binding decision such as imposing sanctions, consists of five permanent members, including the U.S., China and Russia, and 10 nonpermanent members.
The current nonpermanent members are Albania, Brazil, Gabon, Ghana, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Switzerland, Ecuador, Japan, Malta and Mozambique.
The five newly-elected countries, including Algeria, Guyana, Sierra Leone and Slovenia, will join the current nonpermanent members of the UNSC starting January, replacing seats occupied by Albania, Brazil, Gabon, Ghana and the UAE.
As a new nonpermanent member, South Korea is expected to step up its voice in the wake of Pyongyang's escalating provocations and strengthen its trilateral cooperation with the United States and Japan, though it could have limitations as it has no veto power.
The council replaces half of its nonpermanent members for every two-year term.
To win a nonpermanent seat, a country needs to secure at least two-thirds of the votes from the countries attending the general assembly, out of the 193 member states.