Caracas , October 26, 2006 (Venezuelanalysis.com)— Venezuela and Guatemala have failed to negotiate a way out of the impasse at the United Nations after the two Foreign Ministers, Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela and Gert Rosenthal of Guatemala, met today.
Voting in the contest for a seat as a non-permanent member of the Security Council was again suspended yesterday after 41 voting rounds. Venezuela has suggested the Dominican Republic as an alternative but Guatemala has yet to respond to that idea.
Prior to the meeting, Francisco Arias Cárdenas said Maduro was determined to find a solution, “We are looking for a favourable agreement, a dignified one. We want to send a lesson to those countries who try to impose their will on others that this is not the way to go”.
The six rounds of voting yesterday resulted in Venezuela scoring between 72 and 84 votes while Guatemala reached between 100 and 109 – much the same as the 35 rounds before that. That is, Guatemala is keeping a solid lead but failing to achieve the two-thirds majority required for a new non-permanent member to be selected by the UN General Assembly.
Venezuela has today suggested the Dominican Republic as an alternative. Guatemala has yet to reply to this suggestion but the President of the Caribbean country seemed positive about the idea. The Dominican Republic President Leonel Fernandez said yesterday that, “We are going to consider it as a possibility, it depends on Guatemala. It’s important to have a different solution.”
Yesterday, Hugo Chávez said he thought Bolivia would be the ideal candidate, “I and the people of Venezuela would feel worthily represented by comrade Evo Morales and the people of Bolivia, who are a brother nation”, he said. Guatemala and the US flatly rejected that proposal. Morales and Chávez are close allies and both see themselves as struggling for an independent Latin America free from US influence.
The 35 members of the Latin American and Caribbean group at the UN had a meeting yesterday in an attempt to thrash out a compromise candidate. The disagreements between Veneuzuela and Guatemala seem to have forced the meeting to end without success, “Any consensus of the Latin American and Caribbean group is based on the agreement between the two candidates, and that is why the meeting of the candidates’ foreign ministers is so important,” said Chilean Ambassador to the UN Heraldo Munoz yesterday.
However, if no agreement is forged the voting could, in theory, go on forever. The UN General Assembly announced yesterday that it had provisionally set aside time for additional ballots through the middle of November.
The current Latin American seat at the Security Council is taken up by Argentina. They will vacate it on December 31 where the new country will hold the seat for a period of two years.