Eyeing the UNSC

Egypt's foreign minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, made the case last friday for a permanent Arab seat (most probably filled by... wait for it... Egypt) at the UN Security Council. Not a bad idea, although scrapping the power of the veto would be better -- or at least making the General Assembly or a plurality of Security Council votes able to override vetos.

Egypt Lobbies for Security Council Seat:

Aboul Gheit added that Egypt has made “significant contributions” on the regional and international level, and that it plays a central role in the African, Arab and Islamic spheres. He said that such considerations reflect Egypt’s “clear eligibility for, and appropriate capacity in discharging the responsibilities of membership” in the Security Council.


I can't say I like the civilizational talk that much though. The UN Security Counil is about power, not equal representation of civilizations -- whatever that may be. If anything, certain organizations like ASEAN or the OAU might have a seat where there is no clear candidate for regional representation. Of course, in the Arab world's case, Egypt has a much better chance than the Arab League.
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Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region, www.arabist.net.