Djibouti Launches Bid for Non-Permanent Seat on United Nations Security Council (2021-2022)

Djibouti’s Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representation to the United Nations H.E. Ambassador Mohamed Siad Doualeh Delivering Remarks

Thursday, December 05, 2019
New York, NY

At a reception held at the Intercontinental New York Barclay Hotel, less than a mile from the United Nations (UN) Headquarters, Djibouti’s Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative to the United Nations H.E. Ambassador Mohamed Siad Doualeh and Foreign Minister H.E. Mahmoud Ali Youssouf launched Djibouti’s bid for a seat as a non-permanent member on the UN Security Council in 2021-2022.

The Security Council consists of five permanent members (China, France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and United States of America) and 10 non-permanent members elected by the General Assembly for a term of two years. In accordance with rule 142 of the rules of procedure, the General Assembly elects each year five non-permanent members of the Security Council. At its eighteenth session, in 1963, the Assembly decided that the non-permanent members of the Council should be elected according to the following pattern (resolution 1991 A (XVIII)): Five from African and Asian States; one from Eastern European States; two from Latin American States; two from Western European and other States. – Source: UN General Assembly.
Ambassador Siad Doualeh introduced Djibouti as the “legitimate candidate” for the non-permanent seat in 2020-2021, based on the long-standing UN selection criteria of “Rotation and Frequency,” and cited his country’s record of multilateralism and international cooperation and engagement.

“Djibouti is interested in service. It does not seek self-aggrandizement. It is genuinely committed to the ideals of the UN Charter.”
H.E. Ambassador Mohamed Siad Doualeh

Djibouti is a member of the African Union (AU) and the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), an eight-country trade bloc in Africa compromising of Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia, and Uganda. She is also a member of, and has the backing of the Arab League, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), and La Francophonie (an international organization representing countries and regions where French is a lingua franca).

Addressing the attendees during his keynote speech, Foreign Minister H.E. Mahmoud Ali Youssouf also described Djibouti as “a global partner for peace” and encouraged members of the UN Security Council to vote for Djibouti in June of 2020.

In presenting his justification for Djibouti’s bid, His Excellency Youssouf stated that Djibouti has “a long-standing commitment to global peace and dialogue” and cited past examples of working relentlessly to broker peace between warring factions in Somalia, contributions made to UN peace keeping missions, and a strong commitment to the UN Human Rights Council. According to him “A vote for Djibouti is a vote for Africa.”

General Abdoulnasir Awale, the 2019 UN Secretary General Agent of Change award recipient, a Djibouti national and current UN Police Commissioner, MONUSCO (The United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) participated in the ceremony to highlight the role Djibouti nationals play in international peace keeping and also reinforce the importance of “police component” in international peace keeping.

Junior Mack Blues Band of New York entertained the guests to good music and Washington, DC-based AMIP News’ CEO Mr. Frederick Nnoma-Addison was the Master of Ceremonies.

About Djibouti

Djibouti on the horn of Africa is a politically stable country with a favorable climate for foreign direct investment, FDI. It is an important maritime passage and a primary trading route between East and West. It is located on the 2nd busiest shipping route of the world, where 60℅ of world traffic transit. Djibouti is a natural gateway to a market of over 400 million inhabitants. Djibouti city, its capital city, serves as a refueling and transshipment center. The country is strategically positioned in the region, and serves as hub for its neighboring landlocked countries including Ethiopia. Its currency is linked to the US dollar, has a low inflation, and is freely convertible.

Full Speech by Djibouti’s Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative to the United Nations H.E. Ambassador Mohamed Siad Doualeh during the launch.

Excellencies, dear colleagues, distinguished guests, members of the press, dear friends, brothers and sisters,

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to this event chaired by His Excellency Ali Youssouf, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Djibouti to officially launch in New York city, Djibouti’s campaign for a seat in the Security Council for the period 2021-2022. Please join us in welcoming his and his delegation to New York.

I also wish to acknowledge Mr. Aboubaker Omar Hadi, Chairman of Djibouti Ports and Free Zones, and Police Commissioner Awale Abdounasir, who just received the “2019 Change Agent Award” by the Secretary-General. We are basking in the glory of his success.

Djibouti believes that it deserves to serve as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for a variety of reasons which will be detailed in His Excellency’s address to be delivered later this evening. At this stage, let me point out just a few:

1. Djibouti is a reliable partner and has worked in tandem with UN Member States, large and small, permanent and non-permanent members of the Security Council on ways to advance our common priorities. Djibouti is by far, the FOSS member with the highest proportion of its national population deployed as peacekeepers.

2. Owing to its geostrategic position with regards to the Red Sea, Arabia Sea, Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Aden, and its trade friendly location, Djibouti has become a hub for the fight against terrorism, maritime piracy, and other transnational threats. It has also served as a hub for global shipping with positive consequences on economic growth and regional stability.

3. The last time Djibouti served in the Security Council was in 1993, more than 25 years ago – You would agree with me that 25 years is a long time! A long time! Djibouti has never shown uncontrolled appetite. It has patiently waited its turn.

4. Djibouti has declared its intention to serve in October 2016. Many of you would recall my meetings with you in an effort to get your countries’ support. I wish to extend my profound gratitude to those who have expressed unconditional support to Djibouti from day 1. My gratitude goes to all the sizeable number of countries that have accepted the proposed arrangement of reciprocal support. We also are grateful to the Arab League, the OIC, and the Francophonie for their endorsement. For those who have signaled support but are in the process of reviewing candidature before making their final decision, we are saying; Please consider Djibouti!

5. To select their candidates for the Security Council and other United Nations bodies, the African Group and the African Union have developed a set of principles and procedures. Candidates are selected on two paramount principles, rotation and frequency. Under these rules, it is undisputable that Djibouti should be the sole African candidate for the period 2021-2022.

6. In light of the above, and out of respect for the sovereignty of equality of States and the rules and procedures governing candidatures for the Security Council and other United Nations bodies, especially the principles of rotation and frequency, Djibouti respectfully urges all Member States to support its candidature for the Security Council for the period 2021 – 2022.

Colleagues, Dear Friends,

Djibouti is interested in service. It does not seek self-aggrandizement. It is genuinely committed to the ideals of the UN Charter.

Djibouti will conduct a positive campaign. However though, it is left with no choice but to fight against some sarcastic and obnoxious insinuation aimed at belittling and delegitimizing Djibouti’s bid.

7. Some claim that the principle of rotation and the rules of the AU are cosmetic. We say this: No, they are not. The rules are what binds us together. And if they provided objective criteria in the past, there is no justification in abandoning them in the present. Why would small states be expected to dismiss and diminish themselves? They do have a role to plat and a contribution to make.

8. Others outrageously suggest that Djibouti is not ready to serve the Council. It was ready in 1993 and it is ready now! We are battle-tested, combat-ready, ready to fight for peace. We hereby warn them Djibouti is ready. We are ready!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *