India and Bangladesh to back each other for UN Security Council terms

New Delhi's attempts for a permanent seat on the council have so far not been successful

India’s Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during a visit to Dhaka. Photo: Indian Government
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

India and Bangladesh have agreed to support each other's bids for non-permanent seats on the UN Security Council, the Indian Foreign Ministry said.

The agreement was announced after Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra's official visit to Dhaka, including a courtesy call on Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday.

Mr Kwatra conveyed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s message of “continued commitment to the bilateral relationship" with Bangladesh as part of India’s Neighbourhood First Policy, the Ministry of External Affairs said.

India completed a two-year term as one of 10 non-permanent members of the council in December.

Foreign Minister S Jaishankar said India would seek another term in 2028-2029, while Bangladesh is likely to seek council membership in 2030-2031.

The 15-member council primarily focuses on maintaining international peace and security.

India, the world's most populous country with 1.4 billion people, and the fifth-largest economy, has been trying for a permanent seat on the council alongside the US, UK, France, Russia and China.

China has opposed India's bid, while the other permanent members have not shown much interest because that would require amending the UN Charter and would alter the global balance of power.

New Delhi says the council does not reflect the current geopolitical reality and that its credibility is at risk if emerging powers such as India do not have a permanent seat.

The Indian Foreign Ministry said Mr Kwatra and Ms Hasina discussed bilateral development projects, defence co-operation and security, trade and investment, connectivity and power and energy, among other issues.

Bangladesh will be a guest at the G20 summit this year in India, which currently holds the rotating presidency of the group.

Updated: February 16, 2023, 9:46 AM