Algeria will sit on the Council as a non-permanent member for two years from 2024

Tebboune seeks to reform the UN Security Council because of its "discrimination" and "complete paralysis"

AFP/ANGELA WEISS - El presidente argelino Abdelmadjid Tebboune se dirige a la 78ª Asamblea General de las Naciones Unidas en la sede de la ONU en Nueva York el 19 de septiembre de 2023
photo_camera AFP/ANGELA WEISS - Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune addresses the 78th United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York on 19 September 2023

Abdelmajdid Tebboune has made no secret of his intention to carry out a profound restructuring of one of the most important bodies of the United Nations. The Algerian president has expressed his determination to reform the UN Security Council, of which his country will be a non-permanent member for the next two years. He believes that the Council has problems that need to be solved "urgently", as the escalation of violence in Gaza following the Hamas terrorist attack has exposed the "paralysis" of the Security Council.

The Algerian president told the summit restricted to the African Union's "Group of Ten" in Equatorial Guinea that "today, more than ever, the reform of the UN Security Council must be addressed with the utmost diligence... and it comes up today with insistence". Tebboune's insistence on these changes may have its real motivation in Algiers' diminishing international clout at the expense of its Moroccan neighbour's rise as a regional leader.

El Secretario General Ant√≥nio Guterres (derecha) se re√ļne con Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Presidente de la Rep√ļblica Argelina Democr√°tica y Popular
Secretary-General António Guterres (right) meets with Abdelmadjid Tebboune, President of the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria

Observers also point to the situation in Western Sahara. The UN's ever-closer stance towards Morocco's proposal for Sahrawi autonomy under Moroccan sovereignty worries Algeria. Despite Algeria's historic efforts to stir up the Saharawi hornet's nest by supporting the Polisario Front, these efforts seem to be unfruitful. All this in addition to Security Council Resolution 2702, which called for a realistic resolution of the conflict that is currently being proposed by the Alawi kingdom.

The growing support for Morocco's solution is causing Algeria to feel resentment, which is pushing it to want to change even the institutions. Hence the fact that the election to the Security Council as a non-permanent member is seen as a glorious victory for what is a mere formality. An official communiqué was even issued affirming the "diplomatic success that confirms the return of the new Algeria to the international scene".

SPUTNIK/MIKHAIL METZEL - El presidente ruso, Vladimir Putin, y el presidente de Argelia, Abdelmadjid Tebboune, asisten a una ceremonia de firma luego de sus conversaciones en el Kremlin en Mosc√ļ el 15 de junio de 2023
SPUTNIK/MIKHAIL METZEL - Russian President Vladimir Putin and Algeria's President Abdelmadjid Tebboune attend a signing ceremony following their talks at the Kremlin in Moscow on 15 June 2023

They added that "this election, which is part of our country's foreign policy assets, reflects the esteem and esteem in which the President of the Republic, Mr Abdelmadjid Tebboune, is held by the international community and reflects its recognition of his contribution to peace and international security". Thus, Tebboune wants to strengthen his position on the international scene in view of his country's imminent incorporation into the Council, and thus be able to make a force from within with what are expected to be constant refusals with regard to possible solutions to the Sahara problem.

One of Algeria's possible objectives is a permanent seat on the Security Council. Although complicated, the "Zulwini consensus" of 2005 expressed the will to provide the African continent with two representatives in the permanent Security Council with veto power. Although difficult, Algeria does not lose sight of this possibility, even though the reality indicates that, even if such a proposal comes to fruition, it is very likely that Algeria will not be one of the two African representatives.

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