Chairman of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Dr the Honourable Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St Kitts and Nevis, has hailed the election of St Vincent and the Grenadines to the United Nations Security Council as a victory for small states.
“The importance of multi-lateral fora being seen to cater for all nations is critical to their credibility”, the Chairman said.
St Vincent and the Grenadines, CARICOM’s candidate, was elected to the non-permanent seat reserved for the Group of Latin American and Caribbean States for the two-year term 2020-2021 with 185 votes of the 193 available. In so doing, it became the smallest State ever to be elected to the Council.
Prime Minister Harris noted that challenges to international peace and security have become more complex and diverse. He also is aware of the adverse effects of climate change on small island nations.
“It therefore means that there is greater necessity for different perspectives to be brought to bear on issues before the Security Council that threaten international peace and security. Small Island and low-lying coastal Developing States (SIDS), such as those that comprise the Caribbean Community should therefore have a seat at the table,” the Prime Minister said. “The election of St. Vincent and the Grenadines marks another important milestone in this regard,” he added.
The CARICOM Chairman recalled a proposal put forward by the Community in the inter-governmental negotiations on Security Council reform that a rotating seat be reserved for SIDS, as part of the package of reforms of the Council now the subject of negotiations. This is indeed a proud moment for St. Vincent and the Grenadines and by extension the entire region.
“I have no doubt that the views and concerns of small states will be well represented by St Vincent and the Grenadines. Our Community stands ready to support our Member State as it embarks on this important assignment,” Prime Minister Harris stated.