UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has called for an expansion of the United Nations Security Council, supporting India’s bid for permanent membership alongside Brazil, Germany, and Japan. Cleverly emphasized the need to amplify Africa’s presence on the global stage during his opening remarks at the Council on Foreign Relations, stating, “I will summarize by saying that the challenges the world presents us are legion. But we do have the opportunity to make positive progress. We do have the opportunity to get the Sustainable Development Goals back on track.”
He added, “The UK has encouraged an expansion of the United Nations Security Council, for example, we believe that India, Brazil, Germany, Japan should have permanent membership, and Africa really deserves a louder voice on the world stage.”
Notably, India, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has consistently raised the issue of global system reforms at international forums. PM Modi reaffirmed his commitment to aligning global systems with current realities during his concluding address at the G20 Leaders Summit in Delhi, citing the United Nations Security Council as an example.
Cleverly also discussed his recent visit to Beijing in his address at the Council on Foreign Relations. He touched upon areas of profound disagreement between the UK and China, including China’s treatment of the Uyghur Muslim minority in Xinjiang, its breach of commitments regarding Hong Kong, and its assertive actions in the Taiwan Strait. Cleverly engaged with Chinese officials on these issues, as well as on topics such as economic recovery and harnessing the benefits of artificial intelligence.
The United Kingdom Foreign Minister commended the US for its substantial military support to Ukraine, hailing it as the “leading supplier of military aid” to Kyiv. He acknowledged the collective international effort, including contributions from the UK and other nations, which has provided Ukrainians with a fighting chance in the ongoing conflict with Russia. Cleverly commented, “The US is the leading supplier of military aid to Ukraine, and I pay tribute to your nation’s generosity. And the Ukrainians are making the most of their support.”
He also noted the challenges posed by the extensive fortifications established by Russian occupying forces in southern Ukraine, which necessitate a deliberate and methodical approach to any advances.
Cleverly highlighted the unsustainable level of combat fatalities suffered by Russia in just over eighteen months of the conflict, contrasting it with the Soviet experience in Afghanistan. He concluded by affirming the UK’s commitment to continue urging the international community to provide support to Ukraine.
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