We join others in felicitating you for convening this debate. We also appreciate the concept note prepared by Portugal and India. Pakistan associates itself with the statement to be delivered by Iran on behalf of NAM later in the debate.
We thank Ambassador Cabral for his leadership and the members of the Portuguese delegation for their efficient conduct of the Councilís Informal Working Group on Documentation and other Procedural Questions. Ambassador Cabral has highlighted some of the important achievements of the Working Group. Pakistan delegation contributed actively to this collective effort.
Improvement of working methods is an integral part of comprehensive reform of the Security Council which is a shared objective of the entire UN membership. It is encouraging to note enhanced attention to working methods in the Security Council itself. Organization of these open debates is a manifestation of the importance attached by the Council to this issue and of the keen interest that it generates among the general membership. We should reinforce this trend.
Such discussions will only translate into tangible benefits through effective follow-up. The Council should further deliberate upon practicable suggestions flowing from this debate with a view to operationalize them. The Working Groupís role is of continuous relevance in this regard. Implementation of Presidential Note S/2010/507 is work in progress. In our view, such implementation should incorporate and formalize additional substantive aspects of working methods, while also reviewing the status of the measures already integrated.
We would like to focus on three principal aspects of this debate:
First,transparency, democracy and inclusion are fundamental to improving the working methods of the Council. Pakistan believes that advancement of these principles will enhance the Councilís accountability to the general membership.
Second,the importance of working methods is not merely procedural. In fact, the issues involved, particularly with regard to decision-making process, cut across the entire substantive agenda of the Council including the work of its subsidiary bodies. It is not surprising, therefore, that the general membership perceives a direct stake in the question.
Third,improvement of working methods will also enhance the Councilís efficiency. However, the effectiveness of the Council, and in turn its credibility, is more a function of its Membersí political will as well as implementation of its decisions and resolutions.
We welcome additional measures on conference resources and interactivity agreed in Note 402 of 5 June 2012. Spreading out Council's periodic workload more evenly throughout the year, where possible and on a case-by-case basis, can also improve planning. Secretariatís efforts for enhancing availability of information and data, including through the Councilís website are especially laudable.
Allow me to point out some of the areas in which little or slow progress necessitates further concerted efforts:
Over the years, non-permanent members have made important contributions for improving the working methods of the Council. This is understandable as non-permanent members, on account of being elected, have a sense of accountability to the general membership and share the general sentiment on the need to improve the Councilís working methods. On the other hand, empirical evidence does not establish correlation between permanent seats and improvement of working methods. Therefore addition of new permanent members is not likely to change this pattern. Nevertheless, understanding and cooperation of permanent members is also important in this process. It is also true that in recent past, permanent members have also tried to reach out to wider audiences.
To conclude, it is in our common interest to improve the working methods of the Security Council. We should therefore continue to pursue this objective collectively and vigorously.