US representative to the UN claims Russia's vetoes 'jeopardise' security council's effectiveness

Samantha Power claimed should the council cease to be effective, countries would 'go elsewhere'

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The Independent Online

The United States has warned Russia’s continued use of its UN veto could render the security council ineffective, as the international institution saw in its 70th anniversary.

A US representative claimed continued vetoing could lead America – and other like-minded countries – to bypass the institution entirely, the Guardian reported.

Samantha Power, the US permanent representative to the UN, said international security was a “Darwinian universe” whereby nations “are going to go elsewhere” should a “particular body reveals itself to be dysfunctional”.

Ms Power’s comments come amid the UN’s paralysis over intervention in Syria’s four year civil war. More than 250,000 people are believed to have died in the conflict, with 11 million displaced.

“And if that happened for more than Syria and Ukraine and you started to see across the board paralysis ... it would certainly jeopardise the security council’s status and credibility and its function as a go-to international security arbiter.”

Russia has vetoed 13 votes since it took over the Soviet seat in 1991, a lower figure than the US who vetoed 14 votes, usually in regards to Israel and the Palestinian question, in the same period.

The UN representative for Russia Vitaly Churkin claims his country’s veto is to prevent the council from being used to dictate regime changes.

Mr Churkin told the Guardian “Some countries were trying to involve the security council in regime change operations in Syria and we were telling them that it’s not the business of the security council to go into regime change mode”.

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