Home/Tag: Veto

The Clash with the Charter

The Veto Cast
The Clash with the Charter

In the final part of our podcast series we highlight one of the biggest failures in the history of the UN. A conflict that raise emotions in many of us, but no matter which side you take or if you chose not to take sides at all, there is one undeniable fact: THE INFLUENCE OF THE VETO in the Israeli–Arab conflict.


Download the transcript as a PDF-version: Episode 6 – The Clash with the Charter, or read the full transcript of the episode below: (more…)

Core Concerns

The Veto Cast
Core Concerns

In today’s episode of The Veto Cast we highlight the concept of Core Concerns. This is a formulation created by Stop Illegitmate Vetoes to define on what grounds a veto can be used legitimately.

The core concerns of a state is to remain secure for its citizens while being recognized as a sovereign country. A malicious Security Council without the veto could, in a worst case scenario, challenge a state’s security and sovereignty through actions and decisions. The veto was put in place to guarantee the permanent members that this would not happen – but today, the veto is used for many more reasons than to protect the core concerns.

In the case of Ukraine the veto was not in line with neither core concerns nor the UN charter. The motives behind the veto and what Russia frames as national interests is explained by Elena Namli, professor of ethics at Uppsala University. With the help of Eduard Dyachuk we explore the complicated relationship between Ukraine and Russia.

Join the veto cast as we we guide you on the complicated road of international law.


Download the transcript as a PDF-version: Episode 5 – Core Concerns, or read the full transcript of the episode below: (more…)

Have You Heard About Burma

The Veto Cast
Have You Heard About Burma

Burma first caught the eyes of the world during the 2007 Saffron revolution when munks took the streets to protest against the regime. With the help of Mya Lay we tell the story of what happened in the Saffron Revolution and what Burmas rocky road towards democracy looks like from a Burmese perspective.
If you haven’t heard about Burma, now is the time!


Download the transcript as a PDF-version: Episode 4 – Have you heard about Burma, or read the full transcript of the episode below: (more…)

Malaysian draft resolution on MH17 opposed by Russia

Update: Since the initial publication of this article, Russia has vetoed the draft resolution proposing an international tribunal to investigate the downing of flight MH17. The vote was held in a Security Council meeting on July 29th.

Russia opposes a draft resolution on the establishment of a criminal tribunal to investigate the crash of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 last year. News sources report that Russian officials call the draft resolution “counterproductive” and “an attempt to organize a grandiose, political show, which only damages efforts to find the guilty parties.”

Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over the Ukraine in July last year in an incident that killed all 298 passengers and sparked an international crisis. The flight was headed from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur and most of the passengers were Dutch nationals. Western countries and the Ukraine have accused Ukrainian rebels of the shooting and Russian authorities of supporting the rebels.

A draft resolution on the establishment of a tribunal to investigate the events was distributed to the Security Council last week. It is backed by Council member Malaysia and supported by non-members the Netherlands, Belgium, Ukraine and Australia. Russia quickly dismissed the draft, citing bad timing and accusing the backers of the draft of trying to make a “political show”.

Among the critical voices from the Russian Federation is UN ambassador Vitaly Churkin who said Friday that he sees “no future whatsoever” for the draft resolution. Russia has also denied that the state supplied the Ukrainian rebels with the weapons system claimed to have been used to fire on the aircraft.

A final report by Dutch investigators is expected shortly. The initial report, published in September last year, established that the aircraft had been hit by a “number of high-energy objects”, suggesting it was shot down.

“A tribunal established by the council would ensure broad international support for prosecutions and would maximize the prospects of securing international cooperation, which will be necessary for an effective prosecution” Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, said in support of the current draft resolution.

The downing of MH17 drew heavy attention last year as it concerned not only Russia and the Ukraine but also Malaysia, the Netherlands and several other states whose nationals were among the killed. It followed only months after another Malaysian Airlines flight went missing en route to Beijing, causing fear among passengers. There are no links between the incidents, however.


Russia to veto MH17 tribunal plan at UN, World Bulletin;

Russia Makes Veiled Threat To Veto MH17 Tribunal Plan At UN, Radio Free Europe;

Australia urges UN support for tribunal to prosecute those who downed MH17, The Guardian;

MH17 destroyed in instant by ‘number of high-energy objects’, says report, The Guardian;

Malaysia Airlines MH17: Russia rebukes push for UN tribunal, CBC;

Russia Opposes UN Resolution for Tribunal for MH17 Crash, ABC News;


Image source:

“Boeing 777-2H6ER 9M-MRD Malaysian (6658105143)” by Alan Wilson – Boeing 777-2H6ER ‘9M-MRD’ MalaysianUploaded by russavia. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Boeing_777-2H6ER_9M-MRD_Malaysian_(6658105143).jpg#/media/File:Boeing_777-2H6ER_9M-MRD_Malaysian_(6658105143).jpg

2017-12-29T12:22:08+01:00July 14th, 2015|Categories: Articles|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

New Zealand uses presidency to campaign against veto power

New Zealand has outlined an ambitious plan for change as the country assumes a month-long Presidency of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Among the goals of the plan laid out by Foreign Minister Murray McCully are restarting Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and lobbying for veto reform.

On the veto issue New Zealand publicly supports the French initiative, first put forward by France in 2013. It calls for the permanent five members (P5) of the UNSC (China, France, Russia, UK and USA) to refrain from using the veto when it comes to mass atrocity prevention. The initiative follows widespread criticism over the way the veto has been used to prevent the United Nations from taking action in conflicts like Syria and Ukraine, among others.

“France have put forward an idea that they should all voluntarily surrender the veto by agreement in areas where mass atrocities arise, and we think that is a really good idea,” says Mr McCully in an interview with TV3 News. “It doesn’t involve anything binding. It’s something the P5 members should think about.”

New Zealand is currently six months into a two-year term on the Security Council after successfully campaigning against Spain and Turkey last year. New Zealand will serve as President again in 2016.

While it is improbable that this July will be the month that the P5 decide to limit their power to prevent international interventions and sanctions, having the presiding country speak up in the veto question has brought it back to the top of the agenda. With more and more countries both inside and outside the UNSC in favour of the French initiative, pressure is growing on the P5 to somehow restrict their veto rights.

2017-12-29T12:22:25+01:00July 9th, 2015|Categories: Articles|Tags: , , , |

Russia vetoes draft resolution on Srebrenica massacre

After heated negotiations, Russia has vetoed a draft resolution in the Security Council that labels the Srebrenica massacre a “genocide”. This follows a request from Serbia to stop the draft.

The draft resolution, presented by the UK and US, would commemorate the 20th anniversary of the massacre. It calls for better genocide prevention as well as condemning the massacre as well as calling it “a crime of genocide”. The vote had already been pushed forward to allow for further negotiations.

The veto follows a reported request from Serbia, with whom Russia has close cultural ties, to use its veto power. Russian and Serbian officials have been criticizing the Anglo-American draft for being unbalanced and risk increasing ethnic divisions in Bosnia. A rival draft has been presented by Russia, although no vote has been scheduled.

Russia’s UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said after the vote that adopting the resolution “would be counter-productive, would lead to greater tension in the region”. British UN Ambassador Matthew Rycroft has said that the draft is was not “anti-Serbian” and that the genocide status is “political fact”.

The Srebrenica massacre took place on July 11th 1995 in the midst of the Bosnian War. 8,000 Muslims were executed by Serbian soldiers, under the command of General Ratko Mladic. The events were the subject of an investigation by the Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia where the tribunal ruled that they did constitute genocide.

Numerous people have already been convicted of genocide for involvement in the Srebrenica massacre by the UN Tribunal at The Hague, but formal recognition by the UN could compel individual states to pursue prosecutions.

“Vote on Srebrenica resolution delayed by Russian veto threat”, AP News.
“Russia threatens veto on UN vote calling Srebrenica “a crime of genocide””, The Guardian.
“Serbs Ask Russia to Veto UN Resolution on Srebrenica”, ABC News.
“Russia vetoes UN move to call Srebrenica “genocide””, BBC News.

Image source:

2017-12-29T12:22:42+01:00July 9th, 2015|Categories: Articles|Tags: , , |
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