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Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 21 Nov 2017 10:12

periaswamy: There are several problems with your argument . The main one is that you’re bringing in extraneous strawmen into the picture . The matter dealt with one specific issue : that of the P5 privilege of ALWAYS having a judge of their own at the ICJ . 15 judges in ICJ, 5 spots are always ‘reserved’.

Your argument is like ‘yes Modi won but what about becoming a developed country ? What about disappearance of corruption ?’ In short, this was a specific action against a specific UNSC P5 power that India was able to take on successfully .

It was not quite definite until today that we would succeed . The UK already demonstrated that the P5 always votes together to preserve themselves and that they’ll use dirty tricks if needed . Neither of that saved the P5 here .

Name another instance where one country marshaled the UNGA vote repeatedly to take down a P5 member demanding to have its own way ?

As for veto power, the operative word is power . What power did FIVE veto wielding P5 members demonstrate here ? Power needs to be demonstrated . Power that cannot be demonstrated or exercised does not exist .

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby SSridhar » 21 Nov 2017 12:51

A bad day for UK, not just because of its loss in ICJ - Shailaja Neelakantan, ToI
The UK suffered not one but three diplomatic losses yesterday, including its exit from the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

First, Amsterdam won the battle to host the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which is currently based in London, news agencies reported.

Then, Paris won its bid to host the European Banking Authority (EBA), also currently based in London.


And more bad news was to come, as later in the day, Britain withdrew its candidate from the ICJ's electoral fray, after a lot of negative publicity and allegations that it was playing "dirty politics".

In the 11 earlier rounds of voting for a judge post in the world court, India's Dalveer Bhandari got nearly two-thirds of the votes+ in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). In the UN Security Council (UNSC), UK candidate Christopher Greenwood consistently received nine votes as against five for Bhandari. This resulted in a stalemate.

Diplomatic sources told PTI news agency on Sunday that the UK is trying to "misuse" its UNSC membership by pushing for a 'joint conference mechanism', to win the contest. There is unequivocal legal opinion against using such a mechanism, the sources said.

"The 'dirty politics' being played by India's former colonial ruler, as one UN insider put it, has sent a sense of 'uneasiness' among other members of the powerful UN Security Council, many of whom are aware of the long-term implications of a move to ignore the voice of the majority of the United Nations General Assembly," wrote PTI.

No doubt under pressure from such allegations, the UK yesterday withdrew+ the candidature of Greenwood, paving the way for Bhandari's re-election.

Luke McDonagh, a constitutional law lecturer at the University of London, in a tweet, called the ICJ exit and the loss of two European Union (EU) agencies "an extraordinary day of loss of British influence".

Following the loss of the EMA & EBA, now the UK fails to get its judge onto the International Court of Justice (ICJ... https://t.co/TBc1vsqRaG
— Luke McDonagh (@DrLukeMcDonagh) 1511212901000

Earlier yesterday, Amsterdam won a fierce fight to host the EMA, which was up for grabs because of last year's shock Brexit vote in the UK, reported PTI. The EMA, one of the world's most powerful drugs watchdogs is "alluring" said the BBC, as it promises to make its new host into a hub for Europe's medical industry.

Matthew Ford, a lecturer in international relations at the University of Sussex, said the UK hasn't seen the worst yet. He was referring to the fallout of the Brexit vote and the UK's exit from the EU.

We haven't even reached the bottom yet BUT on 1 day we've seen: UK have its judge on UN International Court of Jus... https://t.co/mxQzOXkqgG
— Dr Matthew Ford (@warmatters) 1511213462000.

Following the EMA vote yesterday, Paris won the bid to host the EBA, which sets rules and regulations for banking in the EU. This regulator has been in London since its creation in 2011, but will now relocate across the channel before March 2019, when Britain is set to quit the bloc, said the UK's Daily Express publication.

A Green Party supporter tweeted wondering whether the 'great' in 'Great Britain' would ever be restored.

https://twitter.com/WhyToVoteGreen/stat ... 4432115712

The two watchdogs, with a total of 1,000 highly skilled jobs between them, are currently based in London's Canary Wharf district but must leave before Britain quits the EU in March 2019, said PTI.

(With inputs from Agencies)

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby SSridhar » 21 Nov 2017 13:24

As the old order changeth, India's Bhandari fills up last vacancy at ICJ - Sachin Parashar, ToI
India's Dalveer Bhandari got elected+ to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) panel of judges in a dramatic fashion after UK withdrew its candidate+ bowing before the overwhelming support in the UN General Assembly (GA) for the Indian judge. A top Indian diplomat quoted British poet Tennyson's immortal line "the old order changeth, yielding place to new" to describe the mood in the Indian camp after the development which is being seen as the biggest diplomatic victory for India in years.

This will be the first time in the 71-year-old history of ICJ that there will be no British judge in what is described as the 'world court'. The Guardian described Greenwood's defeat as a humiliating blow to British international prestige and an acceptance of its diminished status in international affairs.

An extremely aggressive, in-your-face Indian campaign led by India's permanent representative to UN Syed Akbaruddin ensured that there were few takers for an arcane UK proposal that a joint conference be formed to break the deadlock between GA and Security Council. UK needed support from 8 members+ of the Security Council to stall voting and instead go for a joint conference.

However, several council members, who otherwise might have voted for Britain's candidate Christopher Greenwood, were opposed to the proposal as they agreed with India's position that this was an "undemocratic" move which would only further complicate the process. Also, for a joint conference to be formed, all 15 council members would have had to publicly endorse UK's proposal, something which countries like US and France, who regularly profess their friendship and strategic partnership with India, would have been averse to. In the last round of GA voting, Bhandari had 121 votes and Greenwood only 68.

In his letter to the UN announcing Greenwood's withdrawal, UK's permanent representative Matthew Rycroft acknowledged that "some thought needs to be given to this procedure (joint conference) before the next ICJ election in order that it might be used when it is clearly needed". A joint conference, which is meant to comprise 3 members each from the GA and Council, has never been used to break a deadlock in the history of ICJ.

What angered India was that UK had early last week indicated that Greenwood might withdraw and yet, without taking Indian officials into confidence, later proposed - as first reported by TOI on Sunday - a joint conference in an informal discussion in the Council to break the deadlock. {They tried to sneak behind our back after trying to lull us into complacency}

With India accusing UK of acting like robber baron Robert Clive, as a TOI report said on Sunday, in denying Bhandari victory, Britain also feared an adverse impact on bilateral ties with a country it has been courting for trade post-Brexit.

Many Commonwealth countries in the GA, where Bhandari had nearly 2/3rd support, also sided with India as the Assembly seemed to rally against the the Council's continued predominance in carrying out world affairs. Another immediate worry for UK was that not withdrawing Greenwood could have lead India to scale down its participation at the CHOGM summit next year in London. Britain has been keen to ensure the participation of PM Narendra Modi in the summit.{It reportedly also wants to move the Commonwealth Secretariat to India, a sort of handing over the baton to the most powerful country in the Commonwealth}

According to former ICJ law clerk and Geneva based Lawyer, Shashank Kumar, the election of Bhandari to the ICJ is not only a major diplomatic victory for India, but also marks a significant change in the regional allocation of seats at the ICJ. Historically, as he said, seat distribution at the Court has mirrored the allocation of seats at the Security Council.

"With Judge Greenwood's withdrawal, the UK has for the first time since the establishment of the Court in 1946, lost its permanent seat on the bench as a P5 Member of the Security Council. Besides a victory for Justice Bhandari, this is a major shot in the arm for India's bid for a permanent seat at the Security Council," he said.

In his letter, Rycroft also said that if the UK could not win in this runoff, then it was pleased that it was a close friend like India that has done so instead. "We will continue to cooperate closely with India, here in the UN and globally," he said.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Philip » 21 Nov 2017 14:26

INDIA WINS! INDIA WINS! Jai Hind,Vande Mataram...

Oh how sweet is revenge especially when the dish is served with winter cold chill !Little Britain (meaning England) humiliated and having to taste the bitter fruit of defeat against its once colonial serf India. It did its best to circumvent the feeling at the UN,using every damnable devious trick in the book,but alas!alas!,all was lost. To many in the Whitehall establishment ,the victory of a "blackie",Indian to boot,to serve at the highest court on the planet instead of a judge from the land that gave the world the Magna Carta ,is simply too painful and unbelievable to stomach.That no British judge would serve on the court for the first time in its 71 yr. history tells the sad and sorry state of affairs in Britain and its decline.First "Brexit" from the EU and now "EXit" from the ICJ! What a glorious day today is.I shall be celelbrating this sublime moment in history this evening in full fashion.Justice Pal must be smiling too from the next world,as he was the frist to put India on the map in global legal history by dissenting at the kangaroo court trials of so-called Japanese "Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal" in the aftermath of WW2.His historic cnclusions:

He concluded:
I would hold that every one of the accused must be found not guilty of every one of the charges in the indictment and should be acquitted on all those charges.

Judge Pal never intended to offer a juridical argument on whether a sentence of not guilty would have been a correct one. However, he argued that the United States had clearly provoked the war with Japan and expected Japan to act.[4]

In his lone dissent, Judge Pal refers to the trial as a "sham employment of legal process for the satisfaction of a thirst for revenge." According to Norimitsu Onishi, while he fully acknowledged Japan's war atrocities – including the Nanjing massacre – he said they were covered in the Class B and Class C trials.[5]


Well they say that "discretion is the better part of valour",and the British wisely decided to throw in the towel when defeat was inevitable.It did not want an open vote where it would find itself humiliated especially in the UNSC too,not just the GA,where some of its so-called bum-chums would've betrayed it!........ "The moving finger writ and having writ moved on..."


https://www.theguardian.com/law/2017/no ... ar-history
No British judge on world court for first time in its 71-year history
Indian candidate fills 15th and final place on bench of international court of justice after UK withdraws its pick for post
UN security council members vote for prospective members in New York.

Owen Bowcott Legal affairs correspondent ​
Monday 20 November 2017
The UK will not have a judge on the bench of the international court of justice for the first time in its 71-year history after the British candidate withdrew following an acrimonious competition.

Minutes after an 11th round of voting was scheduled to begin in New York on Monday, a letter was released by the UK mission to the UN announcing that Sir Christopher Greenwood would accept defeat and allow the rival Indian candidate, Dalveer Bhandari, to fill the final vacancy on the ICJ.

The decision to bow to mounting opposition within the UN general assembly is a humiliating blow to British international prestige and an acceptance of a diminished status in international affairs. :rotfl:

Justice Dalveer Bhandari of India, the final judge on the ICJ bench.

That the runoff for the last place on what is known as the world court was between Britain and India, a nation likely to feature as a more significant trading partner post-Brexit, may have been a contributory element in the final calculations.

There have been calls in Indian media for the country to leave the Commonwealth if the UK exploited its position as one of the five permanent members of the security council to defend its weakened position.
*(Ha!Ha! It smelt the chai from the Modi tea stall what?!)

The ICJ is composed of 15 judges elected to nine-year terms by the UN general assembly and the UN security council.
Four other judges, from Brazil, France, Lebanon and Somalia, had already been elected to the ICJ in the earlier rounds.

In the last round of voting at the UN a week ago, Greenwood secured only 68 votes in the general assembly against Bhandari’s 121 votes. The British candidate, however, had nine votes in the UN security council against the Indian’s five. A majority in both the general assembly and security council was required to win a place on the ICJ bench.

The race for the last place involved weeks of diplomatic lobbying and, in the end, the UK was partially the victim of residual international resentment in the UN general assembly of the dominance and privileges of the permanent five members of the security council – the US, Britain, France, China and Russia.

UK humiliated as international court election goes to runoff

Other factors also torpedoed UK efforts. Greenwood, a highly experienced and capable lawyer, was tainted in some eyes because of his advice to the Blair government in the run-up to the Iraq invasion in 2003.
*(A war criminal judge to boot! Now we understand why Britain was so desperate to have this war criminal judge in the ICJ so that future wars could be unleashed by the "5 eyes" club with impunity.)

He was instructed by the then attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, to examine the arguments over the legality of using force against Saddam Hussein and concluded that use of force was justified.

This is the second time the UK has been humiliated at the UN in recent months, amid signs that some EU nations no longer feel the need to automatically support an isolationist former partner.

The outcome was seen as a significant moment in the history of the court. Dr Damian Gonzalez Salzburg, of Sheffield University’s centre for International and European Law, said: “It will be the first time in UN history where less than five judges from the most powerful regional group will sit at the ICJ. This may indicate the will of non-Western States to challenge Western privileges enshrined in customary rules for ICJ elections”.

Another factor may have been continuing resentment of the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, and his undiplomatic put-downs of other countries.

In a separate vote at the UN general assembly last June, the UK was defeated 94-15 when a Mauritian-backed resolution questioning the disputed legal status of the UK’s hold over the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean was referred to the ICJ.

The world court, which is based at The Hague, hears disputes over sovereignty and international borders from all over the globe. Greenwood had served one nine-year term as a judge there.

The letter from Matthew Rycroft, the UK’s permanent representative at the UN, said: “The current deadlock is unlikely to be broken by further rounds of voting.

“We have therefore consulted our candidate, Sir Christopher Greenwood, who has confirmed that his candidature for re-election to the international court of justice should be withdrawn.

EU members abstain as Britain defeated in UN vote on Chagos Islands
Read more
“In taking this step, we have borne in mind the close relationship that the United Kingdom and India have always enjoyed and will continue to enjoy, and the fact that both candidates fulfil the requirements for election and have already served the court diligently with impartiality and independence.”

The letter added that had voting been stalemated again, there is a mechanism for resolving disputes – a joint conference between the UN security council and general assembly - but it acknowledged that “some thought needs to be given to this procedure before the next ICJ election in order that it might be used when it is clearly needed”.

Rycroft added: “The UK has concluded that it is wrong to continue to take up the valuable time of the security council and the UN general assembly with further rounds of elections.

“The UK congratulates the successful candidates, including Judge Bhandari of India. We are naturally disappointed, but it was a competitive field with six strong candidates.

“If the UK could not win in this runoff, then we are pleased that it is a close friend like India that has done so instead. We will continue to cooperate closely with India, here in the United Nations and globally.” :rotfl:
*(What effing hypocrisy.If India was indeed a "close friend" ,Britain would not have behaved so shamefully and despicably!


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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby vinod » 21 Nov 2017 15:08

P5 Meeting somewhere in world right now:

One P5 Member: OK guys, one of our guys lost. Do you agree this cannot happen again?
Other P5 Members: Yeah, we agree. Never again. Next it will be us. It has to stop now.
One P5 Member: OK then, let us change the rules so that it remain so. Agreed?
Others: Yes, Let us change the rules!

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Bart S » 21 Nov 2017 15:12

Suraj wrote:
periaswamy wrote:I just meant that If the matter had been pushed to its logical conclusion, then the UNSC's weakness would have been demonstrated

How has that NOT been demonstrated here ?



Exactly. It is like a player 'retiring' from a chess match understanding that he has no way to win or draw, instead of playing on till he is checkmated. No less a comprehensive defeat.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Vips » 21 Nov 2017 18:54

Gurus, Is it in anyway possible to find which 9 of the 193 General assembly member nations voted against India? (India got 183 out of the 193 votes). Considering China and UK itself voted for India, It would be interesting to find out the name of these inconsequential anti-india entities. I asked for 9 as Porkistan is already counted.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Vips » 21 Nov 2017 19:18

How UK lost International Court of Justice place to India.

The International Court of Justice is the principal legal body of the United Nations. It is based in The Hague and its job is to settle disputes between states.

Lots of its work is highly technical and not exactly the stuff of the front pages. And let's be honest, many people would probably not have known that one of the 15 judges had always been British ever since the court was set up after the Second World War.
But the loss of a British presence around that supreme judicial bench is of huge significance - not just to the court but to the UK's standing in the world.

This is how it happened. Five of the 15 judges are elected every three years to ensure continuity. Britain's judge, Sir Christopher Greenwood, was hoping to win re-election for a second nine year term. He is a highly distinguished lawyer and former professor in international law at the LSE.

But there was a hitch. Rather unexpectedly, Lebanon's former ambassador to the UN put his hat in the ring. So instead of there being five candidates for five places, now there were six.

And the former ambassador, having spent many years at the UN, had enough friends to win the election. He won one of the slots reserved for candidates from Asia. This meant the Indian candidate - Dalveer Bhandari - had to try his luck for a slot normally reserved for Europeans and in this case that meant challenging the UK.

In recent days, the four other candidates were elected. But while Sir Christopher won the support of the UN Security Council, the Indian judge was backed by the UN General Assembly. A successful candidate needs a majority of support in both bodies. And after repeated votes, there was deadlock.

The Indian government was working hard, twisting arms, lobbying furiously, pulling in favours (Look who is talking). The Indian newspapers were full of accusations that the British were using "dirty tricks" to try to win. Some commentators compared Britain's behaviour to its old commander in chief of British India, Robert Clive (rightfully so). Few anti-colonialist tropes were left unused.

In contrast, British ministers made some telephone calls. The British did consider invoking a little known provision in the UN Charter which allows for an arbitration process known as a "joint conference" to try to resolve such an impasse.

Matthew Rycroft, the UK's ambassador to the UN, said he was "pleased" that a "close friend like India" had won.

But in the end, the UK chose not to use this process, fearing either it would not get enough support in the UN Security Council, or that the competition would become too bitter and potentially disrupt the UK's economic relations with India.

Either way, it means that from early next year, when Sir Christopher stands down, the UK will not have a judge on the ICJ for the first time since 1946.

On one level, this reflects a shift in the balance of power at the UN away from the Security Council. Many members on the General Assembly resent the way the Security Council has so much power, particularly the five permanent members.

The so-called Group of 77 - which represents a coalition of mostly developing nations - has long been pushing for greater influence. The victory of India over the UK will be seen as a huge success for the G77 in pushing back against the traditional northern powers on the security council.
Diplomatic set back?

Foreign Office sources pointed out that the UK's ousting from the ICJ is not without precedent. They pointed to France failing to get its candidate onto the International Law Commission last year and Russia's exit from the Human Rights Commission.

But it is also true to say that this represents a defeat for the UK itself. This is a failure of UK diplomacy. Downing Street refused to confirm that Theresa May herself got involved in lobbying for this job - they merely said representations have been made at the highest levels of government. But Boris Johnson and his Foreign Office ministers were certainly involved. And they failed. They failed to win enough support in the General Assembly.
Matthew Rycroft, the UK's highly rated ambassador to the UN, said the UK had folded because it did not want to take up more of the UN's valuable time, and he said he was "pleased" that a "close friend like India" had won. Perhaps more frankly, he admitted that the UK was "naturally disappointed".

However hard the government tries, this defeat at the UN will be seen as a significant diplomatic set back, a symbol of Britain's reduced status on the world stage. Britain tried to win an election - but the community of nations backed the other side, no longer fearing any retribution from the traditional powers, no longer listening to what Britain had to say.

Some will blame this on Brexit. That might be a little simplistic. Few countries are as obsessed with Brexit as the UK. It is simply not at the front of their minds. But what is clear is that many countries at the UN were willing to defy Britain and that would have been less likely a few years ago.
The government likes to talk of what it calls "global Britain", a vision of a buccaneering UK, independent of the EU, promoting its interests and values and trade around the world. The problem is that many believe that vision has not yet been backed up with any policy substance.

Instead, rightly or wrongly, many countries see the UK turning in on itself to sort out the complexity of Brexit. They see it as a retreat from the international stage - whatever the Brexiteers argue to the contrary - and these countries are filling the vacuum accordingly.

We saw a sign of this earlier in the year in June, when the UN general assembly voted against Britain to refer a dispute between the UK and Mauritius over some islands in the Indian Ocean, to the International Court of Justice.

In another age, Britain would perhaps have called in favours, flexed its P5 muscles, and taken the fight to India. But instead it withdrew, at best to take a short term hit probably to avoid a long term economic loss. At worst it simply gave up because it had no alternative and as a result, for the first time in 71 years, the UK will no longer be represented in the world's highest court.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby periaswamy » 21 Nov 2017 20:22

suraj: Your argument is like ‘yes Modi won but what about becoming a developed country ? What about disappearance of corruption ?’ In short, this was a specific action against a specific UNSC P5 power that India was able to take on successfully .

It was not quite definite until today that we would succeed . The UK already demonstrated that the P5 always votes together to preserve themselves and that they’ll use dirty tricks if needed . Neither of that saved the P5 here .



Suraj, I do acknowledge the victory in the ICJ for the Indian govt. in taking the sheen off the UNSC. No questions. It is perhaps the wrong time to point out that the UNSC's privileges in the UN, but as Kashi says removing the edifice is done brick by brick. UN is not quite going the way of the League of Nations, but it should, given what these events have revealed. Then again, UN has limited/no powers that can challenge the will of its powerful members, even those not part of the UNSC, so what I am pointing out is not relevant. I guess this is why no one invites me to victory celebration parties these days.

As for veto power, the operative word is power . What power did FIVE veto wielding P5 members demonstrate here ? Power needs to be demonstrated . Power that cannot be demonstrated or exercised does not exist .


I agree. The UNSC chose the path of not going through the exercise that would have been very revealing about what kind of support it had in the UN.
Last edited by periaswamy on 21 Nov 2017 21:08, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Vips » 21 Nov 2017 21:00

In the end the Security Council members who had assured support to India but were instead voting for UK did not want to be exposed. They would have bluntly told UK that it could not antagonise India. UK had then no option but do downhill skiing as the conference mechanism option it wanted to exercise would entail an open vote.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby periaswamy » 21 Nov 2017 21:10

vips: They would have bluntly told UK that it could not antagonise India.


But, as Suraj has explained, the only danger for the UNSC (and others) was the open vote which would have revealed which parties claimed they would support one side or the other, but did not do so in actual voting. The UNSC already voted for the UK by a slender margin (both perm and non perm members).

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 21 Nov 2017 21:13

periaswamy wrote:I agree. The UNSC chose the path of not going through the exercise that would have been very revealing about what kind of support it had in the UN.

To quote the example made earlier, it's simply a case of an opponent resigning a chess game when he knows he's headed for certain defeat. Your argument is that because he didn't play on till actual checkmate, it's not a 'real defeat'. That's not how real life works, though.

I'll ask again - when was the last time someone marshalled UNGA support to openly defy and successfully supplant a P5 member from a position that's been their birthright ? Really, none. The UNGA has never been used to this effect before. It has always been the case the P5 > UNSC >>> UNGA.

Also 'why didn't they do the remaining moves' can be argued in reverse. Is it a sign of strength to hide and give up for being unwilling to show your hand ? On what planet is giving up a 70+ year privilege of the P5 under duress merely to maintain a figment of privacy, a sign of strength ? A strong guy would just say "Eff you India. Yes, I voted against you. What are you going to do about it ? We're going to sit together and keep this ICJ seat for ourselves , and there's NOTHING you can do about it". That is power. But, they don't have that power.

You speak repeatedly of 'power'. There's notional power and what one can exercise. Veto arguably has been reduced to something only 1-2 P5 members can use in any real manner. For PRC, UK and France, veto is just a 'bullet proof vest', i.e. it's a defensive protection but not something they can use. UK, in particular, has no veto 'power' of any kind left. They can't start anything in UNSC now, with the other P4 thinking 'look at this little chump, trying to lead an action and look big. The fool couldn't even keep a seat in ICJ properly'.

This is like 5 dons in a Mafia movie. They power they have is the power they demonstrate to the world and to each other. If they don't demonstrate it, they don't have it. In particular, the weak guy makes them all look weak. Therefore we did the right thing - repeatedly go after the weak guy, UK.

The UNSC P5, despite its collective power, has never been able to do anything actionable against India. The only way we can let them - especially UK - 'demonstrate power', is to issue a resolution, which they can veto. Their main privileges are in fact not the codified powers, but the entitlements to seats of power... like a default ICJ seat, where we just shoved UK aside anyway.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 21 Nov 2017 21:14

periaswamy wrote:The UNSC already voted for the UK by a slender margin (both perm and non perm members).

Once the UK withdrew, the UNSC vote was 15 in favor of India, no absentions, no votes against. Metaphorically kissing our ring, the whole lot of them.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby periaswamy » 21 Nov 2017 22:00

Suraj: You speak repeatedly of 'power'. There's notional power and what one can exercise. Veto arguably has been reduced to something only 1-2 P5 members can use in any real manner. For PRC, UK and France, veto is just a 'bullet proof vest', i.e. it's a defensive protection but not something they can use.


That is true -- UK cannnot use its veto power because it already has no real influence in the world today. Same for France. Only USA, Russia, and China do use it to stop the UN from passing binding resolutions that go against their interests.

Seems to me that you need to have interests to protect, to use veto power, i.e., already have influence to use veto powers to retain influence (outside of the UN). PRC seems to "use" it more often these days and in the past month it has (1) vetoed resolutions on Myanmar government re: Rohingyas (2) vetoed action against Jaish in Pakistan. This allows it to retain influence in Myanmar and Pakistan, and defend its investments in these countries. Russia used its veto during the Ukraine crisis.

Corollary to all of this is that "legitimacy" and "influence" etc. and indeed the concept of the UN itself is pretty useless -- it can do nothing to moderate the behavior of already powerful states, especially ones with significant economic interests.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Vips » 21 Nov 2017 23:17

periaswamy wrote:
vips: They would have bluntly told UK that it could not antagonise India.


But, as Suraj has explained, the only danger for the UNSC (and others) was the open vote which would have revealed which parties claimed they would support one side or the other, but did not do so in actual voting. The UNSC already voted for the UK by a slender margin (both perm and non perm members).


My post was the SC members would have been exposed in further voting during the conference method that was proposed by UK.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby periaswamy » 21 Nov 2017 23:38

vips: My post was the SC members would have been exposed in further voting during the conference method that was proposed by UK.


yes, indeed that was what I was trying to point out earlier, but then UK "withdrawing" from the contest was just to save face to avoid the inevitable. The only difference there would have additional information on which countries voted against India.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 22 Nov 2017 00:34

Let me rewind back to the UNSC for a moment. It's current members are: P5 plus Japan, Sweden, Uruguay, Italy, Ukraine, Bolivia, Egypt, Senegal, Ethiopia, Kazakhstan

Fact: We repeatedly polled 5/15 with 9 against and one abstention, in UNSC

It can be assumed with a measure of confidence that
a) The P5 voted against us (collective self interest, plus how on earth could it be P5 voting for us and the remainder voting against??)
b) the non-permanent 'developing bloc' voted for us.
c) The non-permanent 'developed bloc' voted with P5

So the margin of error in guessing who voted for us is 1-2 at most, *despite* the vote being secret. I'm open to suggestions on which other way this could have resulted in 5 for, 9 against and 1 absent.

How do you think the decision making on 'should we vote openly on whether to form a Joint Conference ?' played out ?
- Those who already voted for us don't care about their vote being known by us. They may care about their votes being known by UK, but the UK was the weaker party in this fight, and in any case UK is assumed to have P5 backing.
- The P5 are already presumed to vote for their joint self interest, i.e. against us.
- The ones most concerned about voting openly against us are thus the non-permanent developed bloc.

Putting oneself in the positions of the Japanese or Swedish, what do you think they argued privately ? They're obligated to vote with their developed bloc who are the basis of their historical security and prosperity, but they don't want to openly take a stand against us.

The P5 desperately needed to maintain their privilege, but could only do so by burning part of the UN house down, figuratively. They could force an open vote, and then what ? Japan, Sweden etc have to show their hand openly.

So my argument is this: the fact that they stopped with a closed vote is a sign of their weakness. If they had moved forward to an open vote, it is a sign of their strength. What strong person wants to avoid being seen ? In any Mafia movie, western or even something like Nayagan, the Don has no fear of being seen. He wants people to know he's the one who 'did it'. Not willing to take that step shows that they are weak.

The post-vote response of UK itself should be considered the irrelevant currying of favor by a weak entity no longer even on par with us in terms of demonstrable power. Their UNSC seat, their veto, nothing could help them here. De facto, India is stronger than at least one P5 power - UK - and probably on par with or stronger than France too.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby anupmisra » 22 Nov 2017 00:47

Why is the UK still on the UNSC?

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby eklavya » 22 Nov 2017 01:03

^^^^^
Because it is a cycling superpower.

Seriously: what is the mechanism for removing a P5? Also, it is the “closest” ally of the US.

The only tangible world class power the UK has is this (but I won’t be surprised if the US keeps the launch codes):

Image

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby ArjunPandit » 22 Nov 2017 01:06

If the UK could not win in this runoff, then we are pleased that it is a close friend like India that has done so instead. We will continue to cooperate closely with India, here in the United Nations and globally.

Waiting for queen to 'gift' the kohinoor back to the same closed friend and be pleased about it

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Karthik S » 22 Nov 2017 01:07

Highly likely, after all the BMs are American.

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Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Peregrine » 22 Nov 2017 03:01

Trade deal with India bigger than ICJ: British media

LONDON: This will be the first time that Britain will not have a judge on the UN's most powerful court since it was founded in 1946. In the House of Commons on Tuesday, Tory MP Robert Jenrick described it as a "major failure for British diplomacy".

"I do think it's a very significant loss and setback for the UK," agreed Dr Leslie Vinjamuri, associate fellow at Chatham House, a think-tank in London. "It was clear the UK was not going to get through the next round at the general assembly, where there is a groundswell of support to distribute more power to the global south, so India was in their eyes a more appealing candidate.

"Britain has taken a hit in terms of its global influence and losing it right now when the country is in turmoil looks like a real setback. To the outside world it looks like Britain is retreating and being punished for not making an obvious commitment to the EU," Vinjamuri concluded.

Others disagreed. Robert Guest, foreign editor of The Economist, said: "I don't think it's a huge deal for the UK. This possibly means more to India than it does to Britain.

"It's quite likely that Britain was prepared to make a concession because the government is extremely anxious to maintain good relations with India because it wants to strike a trade deal with India after Brexit. That is a bigger deal for the UK than having an ICJ seat. India and the UK have a similar legal system. It would not be the same as if China took the seat."

Guest added: "India is in a position where the recognition it gets on international bodies is rather less than its weight in the real world, so you can see why Indians want more recognition. India is rapidly becoming a great power and it seems entirely fair and appropriate that it does have a seat."

Marco Giannangeli, defence & diplomatic editor, Sunday Express, said: "What I hear is that it was done to bank a favour from India because our future post-Brexit relationship is more important than having a judge at the ICJ. I think there is a hunger for more representation and change at the UN, especially by India which sees itself as a superpower in the making. I think because the other contender was India there was less concern within Britain because India has the same legal foundations as the UK."

Indian-origin Tory MP Shailesh Vara said: "This is disappointing for the UK but there is some comfort in that the position has gone to India, a country that is very close to the UK and with whom we have the strongest relations."

Cheers Image

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 22 Nov 2017 05:16

Sounds like they’re doing just what we want of them - make concession after concession to us now, in the hope of something in return tomorrow that they’ll not get .

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby panduranghari » 22 Nov 2017 19:28

Vips wrote:In another age, Britain would perhaps have called in favours, flexed its P5 muscles, and taken the fight to India. But instead it withdrew, at best to take a short term hit probably to avoid a long term economic loss.


Why does the UQ believe we have to trade with them anyway? Not that the ROW does not want to trade with UQ but seriously, what is there the UQ can offer that some other western nation cannot offer?

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 22 Nov 2017 20:47

UQ has convinced themselves that their ‘magnanimity’ means we have no alternative but to give them a good trade deal . Only the weaker party makes concesssions first in the hope of future benefit . But UQ being who they are, assume they are entitled to benefits . They’re in for great :(( when GoI demands more and then tells them there’s no deal on offer .

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby ArjunPandit » 22 Nov 2017 21:10

Suraj wrote:UQ has convinced themselves that their ‘magnanimity’ means we have no alternative but to give them a good trade deal . Only the weaker party makes concesssions first in the hope of future benefit . But UQ being who they are, assume they are entitled to benefits . They’re in for great :(( when GoI demands more and then tells them there’s no deal on offer .

reminds me of their aid and eurofarter argument :D :mrgreen: :twisted:

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 23 Nov 2017 01:27

I read up a little more about the ICJ issue. The greater detail makes it more interesting.
* Both the judges - Greenwood and Bhandari, are current sitting judges in the ICJ.
* Greenwood occupies the Seat 4, the nominally western European seat that UK has occupied since 1946.
* Greenwood's seat has a 9 year term (2009-2018).
* Bhandari was in the Asia region seat, with a 6 year term (2012-2018).
* This is why they were in the contest at the same time despite entering ICJ 3 years apart.
* Originally there were 5 open seats and 5 candidates (Somalia, France, Brazil, India, UK). Easy, no conflict.
* But the Lebanese Ambassador - a popular guy - unexpectedly applied for the Asia seat and won it.
* By then, France, Brazil and Somalia had also won their seats. UK hadn't yet completed their work.
* GoI or MEA decided 'let us just kick the British out and take their seat'.
* So to UK's shock and surprise, Bhandari contests for the Western European Seat 4.
* To even greater unpleasant surprise, he consistently wins 55-65% of UNGA votes.
* In the past, as the BBC article says, UK+P5 would have simply armtwisted us. But this is 2017, and the sizes of the two countries arms are very different.
* To increasing British consternation, we keep polling UNGA majorities and refuse to stick to historical norms of P5 privilege.

Result: UK gives up. India now occupies Seat 4 beginning 2018, the former UK seat, for the next 9 years. UK can fight it out against someone for another seat in another 3, 6 or 9 years.

The symbolism is remarkable. Each of the P5 has a 9-year seat in ICJ they continuously occupied since 1946 (except a brief interregnum for China during Cultural Revolution era). We now symbolically occupy the former UK permanent seat, while *they* have to fight for a seat from the general pool in future.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Gus » 23 Nov 2017 01:41

Suraj - when u say nominally w.european - does it mean by tradition or by design?

not understanding how that can have 9 yr term, while asia region seat has only 6 year term. Is this a tiered system? in that case, how can we contest for another tier?

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 23 Nov 2017 01:58

Seats are allocated by zone. Each geographical zone has a candidate. The UK seat was classified as 'Western Europe', but in reality has been continuously warmed by a series of British bottoms since 1946 . Starting 2018 an Indian bottom will warm it instead.

On paper anyone can contest for any seat. By tradition,
* people only compete for their own zonal reserved seat
* the P5 occupies their originally annointed spots: #2 for France, #4 for UK, #7 for US as I recall. I think Russia and China occupy #9 and 13 (or was it 10 and 13 ?)
* Each of the 'permanent' seats are on paper listed by zone, but in reality, the corresponding P5 member sits there. So 'Seat 4, western Europe' is in reality 'Only UK permitted to apply'

I believe the numbers are the order in which they literally sit on the panel (I may be wrong). The remaining 10 spots are zonally reserved and general decorum is that you don't fight outside your zonal spot, and most definitely don't fight for one of the P5's seats.

Of course it is tiered. 5/15 seats were always long term seats considered off bounds except to P5, and the remaining 190 countries fought for the remaining 10 seats, which in turn were subdivided into zones, and you were supposed to apply to the 3 or 6 year seat in your own zone.

I guess GoI and MEA didn't bother with that memo when they decided to apply for the seat marked '9 YEARS, FOR BRITISH BOTTOMS ONLY'. After the Lebanese grabbed the 6-year Asia seat, we should have stepped aside, but err, decided not to :)

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Pathik » 23 Nov 2017 04:25

^^ Little Britain...This should go to the brf dictionary, especially after brexit and britshitstan demographics. This is what these thugs deserve to be called...Li'l Britain

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Rahul M » 23 Nov 2017 08:14

Wonder what was the play for Lebanon to suddenly run for the Asian seat when India was already in the fray. Who instigated them, if anyone did ? Pak, PRC ?

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Philip » 23 Nov 2017 09:58

Veteran dip0lomat KC Singh brings the vote into clearer peerspective and warns against over-enthu celebrations.

India’s ICJ win: Don’t overdo the rejoicing
Published Nov 23, 2017,

India’s permanent representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin correctly shared the credit with the political leadership in New Delhi.

Justice Dalveer Bhandari’s election at the United Nations earlier this week for a fresh nine-year term at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at The Hague has brought jubilation to South Block and to India. India’s permanent representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin correctly shared the credit with the political leadership in New Delhi, bureaucrats being best served by avoiding the limelight. Justice Bhandari has already been at the ICJ for five years, having succeeded an incumbent who resigned to assume political office at home.

As per the statutes of the ICJ, appended to the UN Charter, five vacancies are filled every three years. Unlike an election to the UN Security Council, no regional distribution is mandated and the statute only specifies that candidates be chosen to provide “representation of the main forms of civilisation and of the principal legal systems”. Conventionally, however, a distribution system has evolved reserving five seats for Western Europe and Other Countries (which include the United States, Australia etc), three each for Asia and Africa and two each for Eastern Europe and Latin America. Also, as a majority is required by each candidate in both the UN General Assembly and the Security Council, the Permanent Five (US, Britain, France, Russia and China) have always cornered one seat each.

Thus, since China’s entry into the UN, one Asian seat goes to it, leaving two for others in Asia. The UK has continuously held a seat since 1946, when the court was constituted. The European group having cornered five slots can ensure a majority on the bench with three more judges, thus providing a fail-safe mechanism despite the jurisdiction of the court not being mandatory. The actual election begins with a list of aspirants presented to the UNGA and UNSC. This year the first ballot was held in early November. Those obtaining the support of a simple majority (97 votes in the UNGA and eight in the UNSC) are declared elected. In the first ballot, where one Asian seat was up for grabs, Lebanon’s permanent representative to the UN actually beat Justice Bhandari and was declared elected, along with the candidates of France, the court’s sitting chairman, and of Somalia and Brazil. That left the fifth seat open to contest, although as per convention it was for the European group and should normally have gone to the UK, a permanent member of UNSC. India had a call to make — to either withdraw from the race, the Asian seat having already been filled, or to go after the last seat and thus break a convention. India chose the latter.

In repeated balloting, the UK retained an edge in the UNSC vote while lagging far behind in the UNGA, with India polling near a two-thirds of the majority in each ballot. That India could best a permanent member of the UNSC in the General Assembly is not a surprise as the bulk of its members resent the privileges of the former. The current success must not eclipse the fact that Lebanon did beat India for the Asian seat. The United States too finds it difficult to get the UNGA on its side, particularly on questions that involve Israel. India’s weakness at the UN while seeking elective positions has been its inability to develop a solid bock of votes. For instance, Africa operates on a consensus basis at the UN. Thus, once by rotation a country or its candidate has been selected, the entire block of 50-odd votes are cast in its favour. Similarly, the overlapping groups of the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Conference would largely align behind one of their members. In addition, the antagonisms in South Asia get Pakistan and some others to unthinkingly oppose India. The Non-Aligned Movement used to be India’s natural support group, but as the group has expanded to constitute literally two-thirds of the UN membership, it is no longer a cohesive entity. The only remaining natural allies are the members of the Commonwealth, who share with India a colonial past and Anglophone affinity. With a deadlock for the last ICJ seat, there were some murmurs that Britain may invoke an archaic provision in the ICJ statute for a “joint mechanism”, with three nominees of each organ, to find a solution. However, with India’s brute majority in the UNGA, moral pressure began building on the UK and it withdrew its candidate. Britain’s foreign secretary, in his parliamentary intervention, extended India a handshake and felicitations, thus ending the matter for now. However, the British media are berating their government for the obvious loss of prestige. It is possible that Britain decided not to use the statutory loopholes to negate Indian support in the UNGA, fearing this might impact its relations with India. Whether Britain nurses a hurt or not will become evident by its handling of billionaire fugitives like Vijay Mallya and Indian extradition requests, or its stance at the UN on Kashmir.

Undoubtedly Pakistan would have worked overtime with its friends and allies to block India as the Kulbhushan Yadav case is currently before the ICJ. Ironically, the UK is the only Permanent Five member which accepts the “compulsory jurisdiction” of ICJ. While there is some prestige attached to having a judge on the ICJ, in reality he is not expected to lobby for India, nor is India likely to be hauled before the court as it does not accept the court’s compulsory jurisdiction. To claim that somehow Indian success in beating a P-5 member is a prelude to India being able to now mount a charge to reform the UNSC is pure humbug. A skirmish won is far from a victory in war. Greater credit would be due if India had succeeded in beating Lebanon for the Asian seat in the first round of balloting. Chest-thumping is best replaced by modest clapping.


PS:
I don't quite agree with KCS.We should loudly applaud and cry "3 cheers" for the efforts of our MEA and FM,SS,supported to the hilt by the architect of the win.the PM!

It is a landmark moment in history,even if the battle was a "little" one in the grand scheme of things.It's what I've ben advocating,that India develop asap an Indo-centric foreign policy leveraging our old friends of the NAM and new friends of the 21st cent. ,so that we remain at the centre of an independent like-minded bloc of democratic countries not tied down to "rigid" mil. blocs as out For.Sec. just enunciated in the aftermath of the first "Quad" meeting,which he downplayed.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 23 Nov 2017 10:27

Rahul M wrote:Wonder what was the play for Lebanon to suddenly run for the Asian seat when India was already in the fray. Who instigated them, if anyone did ? Pak, PRC ?

Whoever it was, ended up with catastrophic amounts of egg on their faces.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby chetak » 23 Nov 2017 11:33

Pathik wrote:^^ Little Britain...This should go to the brf dictionary, especially after brexit and britshitstan demographics. This is what these thugs deserve to be called...Li'l Britain


there is another befitting name already earned by this fraud of a country--Perfidious Albion, a jaded and archaic name perhaps but also very fitting.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby rgosain » 23 Nov 2017 12:38

Back in 1996 the uk, usa and china encouraged Australia to seek a vote at UNGA that would overide India's concerns regarding the ctbt. How things have come a full circle, that the UK had to rely on the PRC who routinely flout UNCLOSS and the ICJ rulings for support at the unsc.
Modi trips have come good but the hard work starts now as the UK and the P5 will be doing everything in their power to unseat the new judge - look for their media and the local ngo to go into overdive.
It is likely that France encouraged its former Francophone colony, Lebanon to go for the Asian seat to create a bloc that shares the same legal code which meant railroading the uk and India into a repercharge to contest the last seat.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Vips » 23 Nov 2017 18:42

ICJ elections: Key research helped India outwit UK on Joint Conference proposal.

A key piece of research dug out after hours of pouring over UN voting records by a diligent junior official at India's permanent mission was instrumental in India torpedoing UK's unprecedented proposal for a Joint Conference mechanism to break the International Court of Justice (ICJ) deadlock.

India's permanent representative to UN Syed Akbaruddin told TOI that the research by the official (name withheld on request) showed that in 1978, 2011 and 2014, ICJ elections were held over more sessions, more meetings and more rounds of ballots than in 2017. In the Dalveer Bhandari-Christopher Greenwood direct face-off, only 6 rounds of voting had been held.

The contest between Bhandari and Greenwood+ was running its normal course until UK, as first reported by TOI on Sunday, added drama to it by proposing at an informal discussion of the Security Council that a Joint Conference of the Council and General Assembly be formed - and the voting stalled - to break the deadlock. Britain feared more rounds of voting would lead to Bhandari acquiring over 2/3rd support in the Assembly. Just how India fought off this proposal in the last 72 hours is the real story behind the re-election of Bhandari.

Akbaruddin parried UK's proposal by laying out the research findings that in 1978 the Security Council had voted in 14 rounds, in 2014 the GA had voted in 15 rounds and in 12 rounds in 2011 without invoking any other mechanism.

"The findings also indicated that in each of the past elections final results were only at culmination of 4 sessions. And so there was no reason to go for a new mechanism even before the end of the 4th session," Akbaruddin told TOI.

For India, ousting a P5 from its perch despite all other Permanent Members joining in support (they had together voted for Greenwood) is nothing short of historic. "Simply put it has never ever happened before. It is therefore testimony of change that is underway. It shows that change is discernible and happens, if not by design then by chance," said India's top official India's top official at the UN.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby panduranghari » 23 Nov 2017 18:58

Amb K.C. Singh wrote:To claim that somehow Indian success in beating a P-5 member is a prelude to India being able to now mount a charge to reform the UNSC is pure humbug. A skirmish won is far from a victory in war. Greater credit would be due if India had succeeded in beating Lebanon for the Asian seat in the first round of balloting. Chest-thumping is best replaced by modest clapping.[/b]


.[/quote]

Isnt this the typical thinking demonstrated by the diplo-babus that Rajiv Malhotra complained about once? KC Singh, I am certain has some deep ties with blighty. What he and his colleagues should have done long time back was attempted and successfully executed now. He is begrudgingly applauding the political leadership when he has served under multiple servile prime ministers who did not really care about anything. His actions or lack thereof suggest we need less of his types and more of Shri Syed Akbaruddin types in the diplomatic corps.
Last edited by ramana on 29 Nov 2017 00:19, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Changed the quote to actual person. ramana

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Philip » 23 Nov 2017 19:18

Philip "quoted",not wrote! Pl.,don't shoot the postman. Nevertheless,in future we should be
"off the blocks" first at the sound of the starter's pistol

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Rahul M » 24 Nov 2017 01:26

Suraj, that may be true but it is still useful to know these things. especially if the instigator was not one of those two.

btw amb kc singh is firmly with the political opposition and his views downplaying an achievement by the current government is not surprising.

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Re: Indo-UK News & Discussions- June 2017

Postby Suraj » 24 Nov 2017 01:41

I have no idea about their motives . Could be related to us or it could not . Let’s face the facts - 5 seats for 5 countries plus 10 seats for the remaining ~190 countries . There’s always going to be some dog eat dog because of the explicitly unfair nature of the setup . All we did was to be the first country to make a grab for the permanent seats, and surprisingly enough, succeed .


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