POL340Y1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 5: United Nations Trusteeship Council

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24 Apr 2012
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Lecture 5: 13/10/10
In the news:
We lost our bid for the Security Council seat.
UN Security Council:
-An organ of the UN: one of six
-General Assemble (all member states)
-ICJ, Secretariat (made u p of individuals rather than states)
-SC, Economic and Social Council, Trusteeship Council
What does it do?
-Issues declarations and is thus a source of sources (provides sources for
conventional international law)
-Under the Charter, the functions and powers of the SC are listed (to maintain
international peace and security in accordance with the principles and purposes of
the UN; to investigate any disputes or situation which might lead to international
friction; to recommend methods of adjusting such disputes to the terms of
settlement; to formulate plans for the establishment of a system to regulate
armaments; to determine the existence of a threat to the pace or act of aggression
and to recommend what action should be taken; to call on Members to apply
economic sanctions and other measures not involving the use of force to prevent or
stop aggression to take military action against an aggressor; to recommend the
admission of new Members; to exercise the trusteeship functions of the UN in
“strategic areas”; to recommend…)
-You can get in by a) winning WWII; b) applying for one of the rotating positions
-The council is composed of 5 permanent members (China, France, Russian
Federation, the UK and the US – and then non-permanent members elected by the GA
for two-year terms and not eligible for immediate re-election)
-The GA elected Colombia, Germany, India, Portugal and South Africa to serve as non-
permanent members of the SC for two-year terms starting on 1 January 2011. The
newly elected countries will replace Austria, Japan, Mexico, Turkey and Uganda.
UN SC Votes:
-The Presidency of the SC is held in turn, for one month, by the members of the SC
-Article 27 of the UN charter each council member has one vote. Decisions on
procedural matters are made by an affirmative vote of at least nine of the 15
member. Decisions on substantive matters require nine votes, including the
concurring votes of all 5 permanent members. This is the rule of “great Power
unanimity”, often referred to as the “veto” power.
UN SC Decisions:
-Under the Charter, all members of the UN agree to accept and carry out the
decisions of the SC. While other organs of the UN make recommendations to
Governments, the Council alone has the power to take decisions which Member
States are obligated under the Charter to carry out: Article 25, UN Charter
What happened?
-Ignatieff is responsible?
-Our foreign policy has changed: less multilateral
-Canada didn’t provide the level of foreign aid it should have (specifically, Africa)
-Harper is too pro-Israeli
-Portugal is more effective in buying the votes of smaller countries
-Brussels: The EU, by nominating 3 countries for 2 positions when it could have
nominated 2 countries for 2 positions, it sidelined Canada (problem with nominations)
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