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Reform and Strengthening of the Role of the Organization

The topic has been discussed substantially among law experts and politicians and some steps have already been made towards the goal, especially by the UN Secretary General. As you can read in his report, he points out that the way to implement the UN agenda is to “simplify procedures, decentralize decision-making and move towards even greater transparency and accountability”, all of which requires great reforms.

Mr. Guterres has already started working on this matter. One of the actions he’s taken is making an internal review team on management reform and they’ve been given their first tasks.

Why is this reform so important? The United Nations is a very old organization, having turned 72 this year, and as such it needs to adapt to modern times. The strict procedures and rules have maintained it until now, but as the world faces new crises, the organization needs to adapt to more effectively counter them.

The United Nations still largely reflects the post-World War II international consensus, despite the global situation changing greatly in the intervening period. The constellation of power is very different, which affects bilateral and multilateral relations. Instead of having just two great powers – USSR and USA, today’s world is filled with various countries on the rise. And those countries want a decision making role that reflects their current power. Furthermore, the problems that the UN is dealing with now have changed as well, since technology and communication have advanced significantly.

The UN has gone through different phases of ups and downs, but unlike the League of Nations before it, it has managed to not only survive, but to establish itself as an important party in decision making processes.

After its foundation, the role of the UN grew until the advent of the Cold War complicated its mission. This was a very challenging period for both the international community and the UN as an entity, especially having in mind the potentially devastating effects of the nuclear arms race. The UN was expected to react and prevent this. However, it was paralyzed – the two countries fighting for supremacy were the US and the Soviet Union, both members of the Security Council.

This was an obvious indicator changes were desperately needed. If the Security Council – the most powerful international decision making body was paralyzed from actually making a decision this meant a serious security threat for the international community.

The difficulty of reaching consensus inside the Security Council is often a serious obstacle to taking action, raising many questions and suggestions about how to overcome this problem. The talks about reform have intensified during the 1990s, a noted period of increasing international cooperation.

This matter is still on the table and awaits bold and innovative proposals, because current efforts have not been successfully in revitalizing the UN for the 21st century.

Therefore, we would like to invite you to join us in finding a solution to this difficult and important question, because the next generations depend on it.