St. Maarten will hold discussions prior to giving support.
PHILIPSBURG:— Prime Minister William Marlin announced on Wednesday that the Netherlands has started its campaign to get on the UN Security Council. Marlin said that the Dutch has called on the leaders of St. Maarten, Curacao and Aruba to support them in campaigning for them to become a member of that council.
Giving an outline on the role of the UN Security Council Marlin said that the UN Security Council is a powerful body that is well known internationally. As the UN charter designates world peace, and international security as the primary responsibility of the council as such gave the council far reaching powers since they are responsible for security.
Marlin said the council comprises of 15 member states of the United Nations, of the 15, USA, France, Russia, United Kingdom, and China are permanent members while the other 10 non-permanent members are elected by the General Assembly for a two year term and they may not serve for two consecutive terms.
He said currently there are five non-permanent seats are up for elections every year, the composition of the council changes annually. The geographic distribution of seats are allotted as follows: 3 seats for African states, 2 seats for Asian states, 2 for the Latin America and Caribbean, 1 Eastern European, 2 Western European.
Marlin said any country that wants to get on the council must obtain two thirds of the members present while voting takes place at the General Assembly in order to secure a seat. He said 129 votes are required for any country to win a seat.
He said the Kingdom of the Netherlands submitted their candidature for a non- permanent seat in the UN Security Council for the term 2017- 2018. Meaning The Netherlands will be competing against Sweden, Italy for the Western European countries. He said the election will take place on June 16th at the UN headquarters in the USA.
Marlin said since 2014 the Kingdom launched its campaign with its theme “Your Partner for peace, justice, and development.” He said a strong emphasis is placed on the composition of the Kingdom, highlighting that its one Kingdom consisting of four countries, of which one is European and the other 3 being Caribbean.
Marlin went on to read excerpts from the campaign brochure. When asked if St. Maarten will support the Kingdom in its campaign Marlin said that they have not taken that decision as yet, but before they do some serious discussions/negotiations will have to take place with the Kingdom and St. Maarten, one being the loan payback system that students that studied in the Netherlands have to pay back after completing their education. He said many students that are paying this loan back cannot finish as they have to cope with the exchange rate from dollars to Euros each month while they also have to pay transfer fees. Marlin said that through these discussions his government would try to get the Kingdom to convert the loans St. Maarten students owe into dollars while he will suggest they open an account on St. Maarten so that students would not have to endure the cost of the transfer. Asked by SMN News if St. Maarten will discuss the dispute committee, Marlin said there are several issues that will be discussed but he does not think its proper to release that information at this time.