Der Sicherheitsrat der Vereinten Nationen hat am 11. Juli den Aufnahmeantrag Südsudans an das Committee on the Admission of New Members verwiesen. Damit ist der erste Schritt getan, dass der Südsudan demnächst das 193. Mitglied der Vereinten Nationen wird. Mit einer Entscheidung ist demnächst zu rechnen, vielleicht noch im Juli.

Für die Leser, die der genaue Ablauf interessiert, hat der Security Council Monitor eine ausführliche Übersicht zusammengestellt:

  • The new state submits an application to the Secretary-General containing a formal declaration accepting the obligations of the UN Charter.
  • The Secretary-General sends a copy of the application to the General Assembly and to the Council. The Council will consider the application at a formal closed meeting and adopt an agenda usually titled “Admission of New Members”.   At this initial session the Council usually agrees that the application should be referred by the President of the Council to a Committee of the Security Council.
  • The Committee examines the application and reports its conclusions to the Council no later than 35 days before a regular session of the General Assembly or no later than 14 days before a Special Session of the General Assembly. (In recent years the practice has been for the Council to complete its consideration rather quickly. For instance, the interval between the first meeting of the Council to consider an application, the committee meeting and the second open meeting of the Council where it adopts its recommendation to the General Assembly is often held within a twenty-four hour period).
  • As membership is a substantive issue nine of the fifteen members of the Council, including all five of the permanent members, must agree to the admission of the new state. Among the criteria for admission is whether the new state is peace-loving and is able and willing to carry out the obligations contained in the Charter.
  • If the Committee recommends admission it usually presents the Council with a draft resolution recommending admission of the new state for consideration by the General Assembly.
  • If the Council recommends admission, the recommendation is presented to the General Assembly for consideration. The Council cannot make its recommendation less than 25 days ahead of a regular session of the General Assembly or less than four days ahead of a special session.  However, under special circumstances, the Council may waive the time limits.  This occurred most recently in 2000 when the Council waived the time limit for Tuvalu and Yugoslavia so that their applications could be considered by the General Assembly’s 55th session.
  • A two-thirds majority is needed in the General Assembly for admission of a new member, and membership is effective on the date that the resolution of admission is adopted.
  • If the Council decides not to recommend the new state for admission or postpones consideration of the application, it has to submit a special report to the General Assembly.  The General Assembly considers this special report and sends the application back to the Council with a full record of its discussion for further consideration and recommendation. While most applications for membership have gone through smoothly, there have been contentious cases. For example, In 1955 Mongolia’s bid for membership was thwarted by China’s veto (when the seat was filled by the Republic of China (ROC) and not the People’s Republic of China (PRC)) as it saw Mongolia as part of China. This postponed the admission of Mongolia until 1960, when the Soviet Union announced that unless Mongolia was admitted, it would block the admission of all of the newly independent African states.  As recently as 2000 China abstained from voting on Tuvalu’s membership as it objected to the fact that Tuvalu had diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

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