1. The elections for non-permanent members of the UN Security Council for the term 2013-2014 were held today. Bhutan contested for a seat in the apex body of the United Nations for the first time, reflecting its coming of age to share responsibilities for peace and security with the international community.
2. It was a privilege for Bhutan to participate in the elections as one of the candidates for the Asia-Pacific Group. The Royal Government of Bhutan takes this opportunity to express its deepest appreciation and gratitude to all member states for their support, encouragement and friendship extended to Bhutan.
3. Bhutan felicitates Argentina, Australia, Luxembourg, the Republic of Korea and Rwanda and wishes them a successful tenure. Bhutan also expresses appreciation to Cambodia and Finland for participating in the elections.
4. Bhutan presented its candidature in 1999 with the conviction that all states, regardless of size and level of development, must be given the opportunity of contributing to build a more secure and peaceful world. States, which have never served, could bring fresh perspectives to existing and emerging challenges and enrich the debate with diversity of thought and approach to the work of the Council.
5. Bhutan regards membership in the Security Council not a privilege but an obligation of UN membership. Having reaped the benefits of membership for over forty years and having served in important bodies dealing with economic, social and humanitarian affairs, Bhutan presented its candidature to assume a greater role and contribute to peace and security.
6. While a seat in the Security Council was the end objective, equally important was the process and journey to get there. The process has been most rewarding and enriching as it provided unparalleled opportunities for bilateral engagement with all UN member states.
7. Bhutan’s candidature was based on the principles of sovereign equality of states, multilateralism, and equitable representation and fair rotation. Bhutan is confident that its efforts will contribute to the ongoing discussions on the reform of the United Nations. Bhutan will continue to dedicate itself to the cause of peace, development and the rule of law. Bhutan will also continue to promote the view shared by the majority of member states that the legitimate aspiration of small states to participate in the work of the elected UN bodies must be recognized and respected.
8. Bhutan takes pride in the fact that the Security Council campaign has further strengthened the sovereignty of the country and enhanced the respect and goodwill of the international community for Bhutan and its people. It has further fostered greater understanding and appreciation of the principles that Bhutan has always upheld.
18 October 2012
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
ROYAL GOVERNMENT OF BHUTAN