The G-20 can be the UN Security Council alternative

Source: The post is based on the article “The G-20 can be the UN Security Council alternative” published in The Hindu on 10th December 2022.

Syllabus: GS2- Global grouping

Relevance: India and G20

News: The article explains the significance of G20 as an alternative to UNSC. It also explains India’s role in promoting G20 as an alternative.

As India begins its presidency of the G-20, there is a certain reluctance on its part to try to end the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This position is because of the fear of failure, especially because of the position India has taken not to condemn Russia.

Why has UNSC proved to be a failure?

During the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the UNSC’s credibility hit rock bottom.

Any reform of the UNSC, particularly the expansion of its permanent membership, will be strongly resisted. The permanent members and a large majority of the General Assembly will resist because it does not benefit anyone except those who aspire to be permanent members.

Among the proposals made in the last three decades, there is none that can command the votes of the five permanent members as well as two-thirds of the members of the General Assembly.

Why G20 can be an alternative to UNSC?

G-20 addresses major issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation and sustainable development.

Its composition is such that it looks like it is an expanded Security Council. It is representative of all the significant countries of the 21st century. It is balanced between developed and developing countries.

The present permanent members and declared aspirants have been included while Africa and Latin America have also been represented. The EU represents a very important segment of the global power structure. A consensus decision of G-20 should be universally acceptable.

How will the G20 be transformed?

A gradual transformation of the G-20 from an economic body to a political body can be initiated on the basis of the Bali Declaration.

Bali declaration constitutes the consensus in the group on the Russia-Ukraine war. If the G-20 emerges as a peacemaker in Europe, it will attain legitimacy as a group to promote international peace and security.

The most important difference will be that no one can prevent its meetings by use of the veto. Care should be taken not to isolate anyone and promote a solution, which is acceptable.

How can India contribute to strengthening the G20?

The first step for India to take is to highlight the Bali Declaration and present a road map during the preparatory process for the G-20. It should persuade the sherpas to take it on its agenda.

This will enhance India’s capacity to deal with the crisis in a formal way within the G-20. It will accomplish India’s ultimate goal of securing the reform of the UNSC.

Once the basic work is done, the UNSC can formalise the decision and implement it for international peace and security.

Why is India best suited to promote the G20 as an alternative platform?

India has been an honest broker in international peace and security. It has taken strong positions on decolonisation and rights of the developing countries. It has promoted a balanced outcome.

India was the author of several landmark resolutions of the UNSC on the question of Palestine. India was a part of efforts made to prevent the expulsion of Egypt from the Non-Aligned Movement at the Havana summit when the Arabs turned against Egypt.

Flexibility in negotiations even while being principled in its national position gave an advantage to India.

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