Ireland wins seat on United Nations Security Council
Press release18 June 2020
Ireland this evening was elected to the United Nations Security Council and will now take a seat on the 15- member body in 2021 and 2022. Ireland campaigned on the themes of Partnership, Empathy and Independence as the key attributes that our country brings to its engagement with the UN and which will drive our work on the Security Council.
Speaking after the result was announced in New York, the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said:
“This is a day on which we can all be proud. We have experienced a very difficult three months as a nation as we isolated ourselves from friends, family, work and travel. However, today’s victory underpins Ireland’s place in the world; as a global island, with a clear and tangible ambition to play a central role in contributing to international peace and security. We look forward to working with our partners in the international community from all around the world to promote our shared values of peace, justice, and human rights”.
“We will do our utmost to make our two years on the Council as constructive and as effective as we can, acting as a voice for all who champion the peaceful resolution of conflict and addressing the drivers of conflict, drawing on the experiences we have gained from peacebuilding in our own part of the world.”
The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney TD said:
“This is a fantastic result for Ireland in what was a very tough contest between competitors who are friends, supporters of the United Nations system and who share many of the same values and principles.
“I believe that today’s result is a clear indication of Ireland’s standing internationally. This comes from almost 65 years of UN membership and a steadfast commitment to building peace and investing in conflict prevention. There has not been a day since 1958 when Irish peacekeepers did not serve under the UN Blue Flag. For this and many other reasons, the members of the UN have honoured Ireland by placing their trust in us to take a seat at the Security Council and to do our best to further the objectives of peace, conflict resolution and security for all of citizens of all the UN Member States. We will not betray that trust”
The Tánaiste added: “I would like to pay tribute to so many whose support has led to today’s success, in particular, to the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, who has played a key role. But this campaign has been supported right across the political spectrum, as well as by NGOs and civil society and I would like to thank all for that. A special thank you to former President Mary Robinson. Also to Bono, and John McColgan who extended all the help they could in helping us promote our campaign for election. Thanks also to my Government colleagues. And of course a special thanks to our teams here in Ireland, in New York – led so ably by our Ambassador, Geraldine Byrne Nason - and in our Embassies across the world, all who have made today possible. ”
17 June 2020
Note for editors
- Ireland joined the United Nations in December 1955.
- Ireland has been on the Security Council 3 times. 1962, 1981-82, 2001-2002.https://www.dfa.ie/media/dfa/ourrolepolicies/unitednations/Campaign-Brochure-July-2018.pdf
- Ireland announced its bid for a non-permanent seat at the UN Security Council in 2005 and officially launched its campaign in 2018
- Since June 1958 not a day has passed without an Irish presence on UN peacekeeping missions in the world.
- Irish personnel have carried out 70,000 individual tours of duty.
- There are currently 471 Irish personnel deployed with UN Peacekeeping Missions.
- Ireland is the largest per capita contributor to Peacekeeping in the Western Europe and Others Group (WEOG).
- Approximately 13%, of our Defence Forces will serve abroad in any one year.
- Brig. Gen. Maureen O’Brien, UNDOP acting Force Commander, is the second highest ranking female in UN peacekeeping.
- In 1960, Fredrick Boland became the first (and only) Irish President of the General Assembly.
- In 1968, Ireland was the first signatory of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
- In 2015, Ireland and Kenya co-facilitated the negotiations on the 2030 Agenda and brokered consensus on the Sustainable Development Goals.