UNITED NATION: India Thursday stressed the need for the UN and its Security Council to "listen to Africa and its organizations" for a "better understanding" of the situation in the continent.
"It is important for us to listen to Africa and its organizations so that the council's activities are not only based on Africa's needs but also complement those of African countries and organizations," India's permanent representative Hardeep Singh Puri said during a Security Council debate on the partnership between the UN and the African Union, Xinhua reported.
"Cooperation with Africa will also enable the council to act with better understanding of the situation on the ground that would establish Africa's ownership of the solutions and promote lasting peace and security on the African continent," Puri said.
The Security Council has devoted much of its time and energy to the African affairs, he noted.
"As much as two-thirds of the active items on the council's agenda concern Africa," he said. "About three-fourth of the council's time is spent on African issues."
"It would, therefore, be no exaggeration to say that the success of the efforts of this Council in Africa will determine in significant measures its overall effectiveness in the implementation of its charter-mandated role as the principal organ of the United Nations for maintenance of international peace and security," he said.
On the UN-AU partnership, Puri said: "We think that this partnership should be based on long-term strategic and operational perspectives taking into consideration the complementarity of strengths that the two organizations possess."
"The focus should be on capacity-building of African Union's peace and security architecture so that the AU becomes a more effective and capable partner of the UN system," he added.
"The African Union has already proven beyond any doubt its ability to address African problems," he said.
"For an effective and enduring cooperation between the UN and the AU, it is necessary that the council not adopt a selective approach to this cooperation," Puri added.
"Partnership should not be restricted only to the areas of the council's convenience but also extend to areas where there may be differences, and be based on mutual respect," he said.
"This requires a mindset change in approach and demands expansion of the permanent membership to make the council reflective of contemporary realities and increased representation from developing countries, including Africa."