ANALYSIS - Leadership Summit Of UNSC Permanent Member States May Resolve Pressing Global Issues

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ANALYSIS - Leadership Summit of UNSC Permanent Member States May Resolve Pressing Global Issues

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 31st January, 2020) Moscow's initiative to convene a summit of the leaders of Russia, China, the United States, France and the United Kingdom the permanent members of the UN Security Council may contribute to the settlement of the Iranian and Syrian crisis and yield initiatives in the field of arms control and non-proliferation, experts told Sputnik.

The idea was proposed by Russian President Vladimir Putin at the fifth edition of the World Holocaust Forum in Jerusalem last week. The leader said that Moscow intended, without delay, to send the appropriate letters to each leader of the Big Five.

Following the president's proposal, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said the five leaders must rise above disagreements in order to find ways for detente in the world and address the current challenges facing humanity.

Since then, Russia's initiative was welcomed by the United Nations, which added that it "encourages friendly relations among all member states." China has also voiced its support for Putin's proposal to hold the P5 summit, as according to Beijing, these countries had a special responsibility for maintaining international peace and security.

MEETING TO BE IN THE INTERESTS OF ALL P5 MEMBERS

Even though the UN Security Council regularly holds sessions at the level of envoys, the summit of the Big Five leaders may prove to be effective in addressing the global challenges, Prof. Sven Biscop, the Europe in the World Program director with the Egmont - the Royal Institute for International Relations, told Sputnik.

"A meeting of the heads of states of the P5 could potentially take important initiatives, especially in the field of arms control and non-proliferation, which is in the interest of all five, but only if President Putin, who called for it, comes with a concrete and constructive proposal that demonstrates a willingness to make concessions on the part of Russia," Biscop said.

Romuald Sciora, the research associate specializing in UN affairs with the French Institute for International and Strategic Affairs (IRIS), in his comments to Sputnik commended Russia's idea, as it could boost multipolarity in the international arena.

"This meeting is an excellent idea. That is for several reasons. At a moment when the multilateral system dies under strikes of the American diplomacy, organizing a meeting of such a scale with the reference to the UN - as it's officially a reunion of the five permanent members of the Security Council - could only help resist Washington's unilateralism," Sciora, who is also an author and filmmaker, said, adding that "besides a strong symbolic aspect, such a level meeting could help resolve several issues, like Iran and Syria.

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At the same time, Thomas G. Weiss, a former UN official and Presidential Professor of Political Science with the Graduate Center of The City University of New York, has expressed skepticism that the P5 leaders meeting will bring any results.

"There is always (or never) a need to meet at the head of state level. Occasionally, it can give visibility to a pressing issue that gets buried or ignored. So [former UN Secretary-General Boutros] Boutros-Ghali gathered when he took office to get a mandate to do 'an agenda for peace'. [Former US President Barack] Obama asked when he was pushing for nuclear talks. The answer is 'it depends,'" Weiss told Sputnik.

As the division within the UN Security Council has long been evident, the P5 members may not even manage to agree on the agenda of the meeting, according to the former UN official.

"The Russians and the Chinese (and maybe the French and the Brits) would like to criticize [US President Donald] Trump for breaking international law in assassinating [Iran's high-ranking military official Qasem] Soleimani. Washington will not agree to that. Of course, the US would like to discuss Russian adventurism in Syria and Libya, but I doubt that Putin would enjoy that. My guess is that there will be no agreement on the agenda items," Weiss underlined.

However Russia, by calling for a leadership summit, proves that it is capable of bringing certain stability and predictability to the chaotic global affairs, according to Sciora.

"Since France of [President] Emmanuel Macron does nothing but aligning with the American decisions, only Vladimir Putin's Russia is in the position today to counterbalance Trump's chaotic politics in certain regions of the world. Stupidly excluded from the G8, such a meeting would allow Russia to regain its place on the international arena and confirm its growing influence," the IRIS expert concluded.

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