‘Inconceivable’ that India, Africa don’t have permanent UNSC seats, says Sushma Swaraj

New Delhi(PTI): Pushing for United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reforms, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Sunday said it was “inconceivable” and “incomprehensible” that India and the African continent do not have a permanent representation in the elite club and that both need to work to remove this “anomaly”. She lamented that Africa despite being the largest continent in terms of number of the countries and India, which has one-sixth of the world’s population, still don’t have permanent membership of the UNSC.

 Sushma Swaraj

“A major issue in this context is that of UN Security Council reforms. The Security Council continues to be representative of a world order of 1945. It is inconceivable that the Security Council today does not have any permanent representation from Africa which is the largest continent in terms of number of countries. It is also incomprehensible that India which represents almost one-sixth of world’s population and has all credentials to be a permanent member of the Security Council, is still out of it. We all need to work together to remove this anomaly and media has an important role in this,” Swaraj said in her inaugural address of 3rd India-Africa Editors Forum.

Swaraj said India Africa and other developing countries need to work hand-in-hand in two critical areas- climate change and world trade – in the form of Conference of Parties (COP)- 21 on Climate Change in Paris and the 10th WTO Ministerial in Kenya in December this year. “In both these meetings also India, Africa and other developing countries will have to work hand-in-hand to ensure that our development agenda is not affected,” Swaraj said. She said 2015 has been a historic year for pushing forward South-South cooperation as India and Africa celebrated the 60th Anniversary of Asian-African Conference and the 10th Anniversary of the New Asian-African Strategic Partnership at Bandung.

Earlier, speaking at the inauguration of a rose garden dedicated to India-Africa friendship in the national capital’s diplomatic enclave, Swaraj termed Africa as a frontier of “new opportunities”, adding “we are interested in Africa’s economic growth and its integration with global economy.”