Thai bid for UNSC 'safe' despite regime
Thailand has affirmed its commitment to promote global peace and security even if it does not become a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), says Virachai Plasai, Thai ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations.
Speaking at a Foreign Ministry briefing Monday, Mr Virachai said he cannot assure Thailand will win a UNSC seat in the vote which will take place in June, but officials, including himself, have put a big effort into the campaign to win the seat. They hope the military junta running Thailand will not put too many people off.
He said Thailand will help the UN security organ achieve common goals and address challenging issues, whether or not the country gets a seat.
Thailand last won a term as non-permanent UNSC member in 1985-86.
"Thailand still has a chance to win the UNSC seat since we have played a leading role in promoting peace and security among the 194 [UN] members. We have been very active. But if we do not win, we will respect the results and keep doing our best," he said.
Thailand is campaigning for a UNSC seat for the 2017-2018 term. The vote is set to take place on June 28.
Asked what Thailand's first task would be if it joins the UNSC, Mr Virachai said the country was planning to put greater efforts into defining an official role for women in peace-building processes.
He also said Thailand will encourage member states to tackle problems at their root, saying "the extremist beliefs of some people can pose threats to regional development".
Thailand has won admiration from the international community for its work, he noted.
Regarding the possibility that political developments in Thailand could affect the bid for a UNSC seat, Mr Virachai dismissed the possibility that it could lead to Thailand suffering defeat, saying it still has a good chance as the situation is under control.
"Of course, it can affect the vote, but as long as Thailand can handle the situation at home and has not yet to become a failed state, our country has a chance to get a UNSC non-permanent seat," he said.
However, he insisted Thailand will not use the chairmanship of the Group of 77, known as the G-77, to boost support for its UNSC bid.
"It probably benefits the country's bid for a seat, but we will certainly not use it to bolster support," Mr Virachai said.
To become a non-permanent member of the UNSC, countries must secure two-thirds of all votes cast for the seat by UN member states.