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G-4 may postpone UN reform vote
Updated: 2005-06-11 14:19

Germany, Japan, Brazil and India will continue to push for a vote in June for the United Nations (UN) Security Council's reform, but the date may be postponed until July, German Ambassador Gunter Pleuger said on Friday.

The four countries, aspiring to be new permanent members on an enlarged council, released Wednesday a final draft resolution on reforming the powerful body, which would add 10 new members to the 15-member council, including six new permanent members.

Under a timetable proposed by the four, the 191-nation General Assembly would vote on the draft resolution in June, elect the six new permanent members in mid-July and then adopt another resolution to amend the United Nations Charter by the end of July.

"Hopefully it will be in June," Pleuger told reporters after heand his counterparts from the other three contenders met with Secretary-General Kofi Annan, "...on the other hand things are flexible and may change."

This is the first time that Germany, the locomotive among the four countries, openly acknowledged the possibility of a delay in the voting date on the draft resolution.

Pleuger said they briefed Annan on the changes in the new draft and the four countries' intention to go forward with their three-step procedure to reform the council.

Annan reiterated his call for a decision on the Security Council's expansion before the September UN summit, the German envoy said.

Citing calls by some nations that they need more time for further discussions, Japanese Ambassador Kenzo Oshima said the four countries had not yet made a final decision on when to present the final draft to the General Assembly and put it to a vote.

Diplomats here said there were signs that the four countries had disagreements on when to seek a vote on the draft resolution and a delay in the vote would indicate they would not be sure of getting enough "yes" votes.

Pleuger denied on Thursday that the four candidates had any plan to delay a vote, saying they would stick to the schedule.

The four nations' proposal to increase the permanent seats on the council have been strongly opposed by Italy, Pakistan, Mexico,South Korea, Algeria, Spain and many other countries, which are lobbying heavily against it.

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