US lawmakers welcome Obama endorsing India's bid in UNSC

US lawmakers welcome Obama endorsing India's bid in UNSC

"I endorse President Obama's support for India's inclusion as a permanent member of a reformed and expanded United Nations Security Council. The UN must reflect the realities of the 21st century, and one of those realities is India's unquestioned global stature," Senator John Kerry, who is the chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said.

"President Obama's endorsement of India not only recognizes its role on the international stage but is also a logical move to enhance global and American security by giving a stronger voice to one of our close allies," said Senator Robert Menendez, who is also a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

"India is the world's second most populous nation, a key economic player and vital to the stability of an important region. Simply put, India is a critical nation for global security, and it makes eminent sense to include it on the short list of nations that should have a permanent seat on an expanded Security Council," he said.

Top Republican leader John McCain, had last week asked Obama to endorse India for the UN Security Council. Though McCain is understood to have welcomed the Obama announcement in this regard, no immediate statement was available from him.

"The United States should fully back India's pursuit of permanent membership on the UN Security Council," McCain said in his speech at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, last Friday -- the day Obama left for India.

"If we want India to join us in sharing the responsibilities for international peace and security, then the world's largest democracy needs to have a seat at the high table of international politics," he said.

Meanwhile, a top US official has said that it is inconceivable to have a reformed UN Security Council without India, which has arrived at the world stage as a major power.
"The (US) President was clear that as we contemplate reform, we are mindful that, on the one and, we need to protect the effectiveness and efficiency of the Security Council. But on the other hand, we are open to countries that demonstrate that they are prepared to contribute significantly to the peace and security of the world. And India is such a country," State Department spokesman P J Crowley said at his daily news conference.

"The President did highlight the fact that, as we continue to promote reform within the UN Security Council, it is inconceivable that you could contemplate UN Security Council reform without considering a country like India. But we have to recognize this is a process that has been going on for some time, and it is a process through which we must consult with others within the UN and within the Security Council," Crowley said in response to a question.

With American endorsement, China remains as the only veto-wielding permanent member of the UN Security Council that has not publicly endorsed India's candidacy.
"We have talked to China about Security Council reform. We've talked to all of our partners in the Security Council, and I'm sure we'll be doing follow-up discussions. We have reached out and explained the announcement that the President has made today. I just can't say whether we've reached out to China at this point," Crowley said in response to a question at the news conference.

The State Department official, however, said the US has not set any time line for the reform.

"Well, we are not able to dictate the terms of reform. This is the Security Council. There are five permanent members, and so this will be a requirement for us to continue to consult within the UN and within the Security Council on an appropriate way forward," he observed. McCain's endorsement for India's bid for the UNSC gains significance given the bipartisan nature of support on Indo-US relationship between and the emergence of Republican Party as a strong force after the mid-term polls.

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