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Zelenskyy pushes for UN reforms and veto override mechanism

Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy backs Joe Biden’s proposal to expand UN Security Council representation and pushes for veto mechanism reform at the UN Security Council meeting on 20 September.
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Credit:
Zelenskyy pushes for UN reforms and veto override mechanism

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for the United Nations (UN) reforms at the UN Security Council meeting.

President Zelensky stressed that key reforms of the United Nations should focus on using the veto. Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the UN General Assembly should be allowed to override the veto.

Zelenskyy at UN Sec Council
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (on the right).

“The use of the veto is what needs reform, and this could be the key reform. Bringing back the power of the UN Charter is important. The veto should not serve as a weapon for those obsessed with hatred and war,” Zelensky said at the UN Security Council. “Provided that two-thirds of the votes, which will reflect the freedom of nations from Asia, Africa, Europe, both Americas, and the Pacific – a global qualified majority – are recruited, the veto should be really overridden, and such a General Assembly resolution should be binding on all member states,” Zelenskyy added.

The Ukrainian leader also stated that there is a need to create an effective mechanism to prevent any illegal aggression through early response to actions violating states’ territorial integrity and sovereignty.

“The Security Council’s membership of any state should be suspended for a period of time when such a state resorts to aggression against another nation in violation of the UN Charter,” Zelenskyy said. “What we observe in the United Nations is an increasing support for the idea that in cases of mass atrocities veto power should be voluntarily suspended. But we also observe that Russia will not give up this stolen privilege voluntarily. So, the UN General Assembly should be given a real power to overcome the veto,” Zelenskyy added.

President Zelenskyy supported Joe Biden’s proposal to expand the representation of nations in the UN Security. Zelenskyy also reiterated the Ukrainian Peace Formula to end the war in Ukraine, which consists of two points:

  • Complete withdrawal of all Russian troops and military formations, including the Russian Black Sea Fleet, from the entire territory of Ukraine within the 1991 borders
  • Full return to Ukraine of control over the entire state border and exclusive economic zone in the Black and Azov Seas and the Kerch Strait.

President Zelenskyy met with the US Special Representative for Ukraine’s Economic Recovery Penny Pritzker in New York City. Zelenskyy congratulated Penny Pritzker on her appointment and expressed hope for future fruitful cooperation.

Zelenskyy and Pritzker
Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with Penny Pritzker in New York.

On the sidelines of the 78th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, President Zelenskyy met with Prime Minister of the Republic of Albania Edi Rama. Albania holds the Presidency of the United Nations Security Council for September.

Edi Rama and Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama (on the left) and Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (on the right) during their meeting in New York.

Zelenskyy praised Albania’s contribution to countering full-scale Russian aggression, particularly in the framework of the country’s non-permanent membership in the UN Security Council. The Ukrainian President expressed gratitude for the consistent position of the Republic of Albania in support of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as for the decision of the Albanian government to provide practical assistance to Ukraine.


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