The United Nations Security Council (“UNSC”) has been subject to a longstanding reform process and debate, with the urgency of a practical resolution revived due to the enlarged and unprecedented scale of the Middle Eastern terrorist threat.[footnoteRef:1] This essay will argue that the UNSC is unable to realise its mandate; to maintain world peace and security, due to the inordinate nature of the veto power held by the five permanent states; China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United states (“permanent states”).[footnoteRef:2] Part 1 will establish the necessity of reform, relating to the politically influenced application of the veto power, the renewed terrorist threat, and the necessity for the council to be representative of the broadening geopolitical climate.[footnoteRef:3] Part 2 will extensively discuss the reform proposals and their unenforceability that centres on the difficulty of amending the UN charter, due to a reluctance of the permanent five to dilute their veto power.[footnoteRef:4] Subsequently, part 3 will delve into practical reform approaches that seek to introduce transparency, accountability and limit the application of the veto-power; factors that are crucial to realising its mandate.[footnoteRef:5] To conclude, the primary points of this essay will be synthesised. [1: Cory Koptizke ‘Security Council Resolution 2178 (2014): An Ineffective Response to the Foreign Terrorist Fighter Phenomenon (2017), 24(1) Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies 309, 310.] [2: Seryon Lee, ‘The Feasibility of Reforming the UN Security Council: Too Much Talk, Too Little Action?’ (2011) 2 Journal of East Asia and International Law, 405, 407.] [3: Ibid.] [4: Edward C. Luck, ‘How Not to Reform the United Nations’ (2005) 11 Global Convergence 407; Kamrul Hossain ‘The Challenge and Prospect of Security Council Reform’ (2010) 7 Regent Journal of International Law 299.] [5: Anna Spain ‘The U.N. Security Council’s Duty to Decide’ (2013) 4 Harvard National Security Journal 320.]
Part 1 – The Need for Reform
The Need to Reflect the Evolving Geopolitical Realities of the Political Climate
The underrepresented geopolitical structure in the UNSC has persisted with the resolutions that were initially implemented that focused on council expansion. In 1963, despite the seats of non-permanent members being raised from six to ten, there was a sustained under-representation of developing countries in the Council.[footnoteRef:6] The Latin American states sought to increase the Council’s membership to twenty-one, sixteen of which would be non-permanent members, but with the exception of China, the expansion was otherwise opposed.[footnoteRef:7] It is submitted that the five permanent members of the UNSC will not approve of reforms to expand the council, to prevent diluting the concentration of their veto power. This introduces a common theme of this paper; that the greatest barrier to reform is necessarily its...