New Zealand proposes voluntary restriction on Security Council vetoesListen /
New Zealand is calling for a restriction on the right to veto by the five countries that are permanent members of the UN Security Council.
Foreign Minister Murray McCully made the appeal in his address to the General Assembly on Saturday.
He recalled that in the early days of the UN, his country had opposed the right to veto by China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, who said it was necessary to protecting their national interests.
"My request to the five permanent members is simply that they stick with what they said in 1945. And my challenge to them today is to consider a process by which they collectively and voluntarily agree to confine their use of the veto to those issues that clearly and directly affect their vital national interests; and that they voluntarily agree not to use their veto in situations involving mass atrocities.” (Duration: 40″)
Addressing issues facing his region, the Foreign Minister said illegal fishing practices and other detrimental actions are affecting small Pacific Island states which rely on the seas for their survival.