Countries eligible to sit on the United National Security Council

From a full-page ad printed in the International Herald Tribune on September 19-20, 1998 sponsored by The American Jewish Committee:
[List of 184 nations, from Afghanistan, Albania, Alegeria, Andorra.... to Yemen, Yugoslavia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe]

Countries not eligible to sit on the United Nations Security Council:


Believe it or not, Israel is the only one of the 185 member countries ineligible to serve on the United Nations Security Council, the key deliberative group of the world body. Even Iraq is eligible. So is Iran. And so, too, are Cuba, Libya, North Korea, Sudan and Syria....

To be eligible for election, a country must belong to a regional group. Every UN member state--from the smallest to the largest--is included in one of the five regional groups. By geography, Israel should be part of the Asian bloc but such countries as Iraq and Saudi Arabia have prevented its entry for decades....

As a temporary measure, Israel has sought acceptance in the West European and Others Group (WEOG), which includes not only the democracies of Western Europe but also the United States and other Western countries.

The UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, on March 25,1998, called for an end to this injustice to Israel and "the normalization of Israel's status within the United Nations..." Moreover, several countries, including the U.S., Australia, Canada and Norway, have expressed support for Israel's admission to WEOG, but the 15-member European Union refused to act.

Thus, without membership in a regional group, Israel can never be elected to serve a term on the Security Council or, for that matter, to the other most important bodies of the UN system, such as the Economic and Social Council, the World Court, and the Commission on Human Rights.

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