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The United Nations and a Safer World

            The United Nations is in charge of making the world a safer and more stable place by preventing and stopping conflicts among its nations. The Security Council is the only organ whose resolutions are mandatory for member states. It has the authority to examine any conflict that might have international repercussions. It can call on UN members to act and apply economic sanctions and even military sanctions .
             The Security Council consists of fifteen members. The five permanent members include: China, Russia, France, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US); the other ten members are elected every two years by the General Assembly. The council replaces a president monthly according to alphabetical order of the council members. .
             The permanent five members hold special importance in the council, in part because of their permanency and their status as powerful nations and also in part because each has the right of veto. That means that when a permanent member votes no on a resolution, the decision is irrevocable, even if the other fourteen council members vote yes. Vetoing was used more often in the past, when the world was divided into communist and noncommunist blocks, now however it is used only on rare occasions. The Permanent five usually play a leading role in the council, especially the United States when it sees clear advantages in promoting its own international interests. France and the UK are working very hard to stay permanent members because their influence in the world has decreased considerably. The choice of the nonpermanent members is based on regions: three seats for Africa, two for Latin America, one for Asia, one for the Arab nations, one for Eastern Europe and two for Western Europe. .
             The Council no longer accurately reflects the realities of world power, which is its principal value. Emerging powers such as Brazil and India merit to be seated at the table. Japan, which is the second country in financial contributions to the organization, also deserves a permanent seat.

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