Belgium can count on Australia in its campaign to obtain a non-permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council, Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders told Belga news agency at the end of his mission to Sydney. During bilateral discussions in Australia, mainly with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, Mr. Reynders secured the guarantee that Canberra would support Belgium’s candidacy for the Security Council seat in 2019-2020.
“It’s an agreement on the Security Council,” he told the Belgian news agency. “We now have our candidacy and so we shall support the Australian candidacy later, when they present it”. Australia is scheduled to vie for a non-permanent seat in 2029.
Belgium’s motto in its campaign for the Security Council election is “Fostering consensus: Acting for peace”. Israel and Germany have also presented their candidacies for the election, to be held in 2018. However, the fact that Belgium has no national agenda is expected to work in its favour.
“People worldwide know very well that if we intervene in Syria or Iraq, our aim is to find peaceful solutions; they know we do not have a national agenda whereas other powers sometimes have national agendas,” Reynders said.
“Over the centuries, Belgium’s foremost activity has been to provide battlegrounds; Belgians know that when our neighbours do not live in peace, they come and fight in our country to simplify things,” he added, “So Belgium’s starting point is peace, democracy and development. When Belgium intervenes anywhere, it’s with a neutral vision, to find compromises and solutions, so as to live in peace.”