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“ONE-billion people cannot continue to be denied a voice‚” President Jacob Zuma told world leaders in reiterating SA’s call for “fundamental reform of the UN Security Council”.

It “is supposed to act in our collective interest without being bogged down by the domestic narrow interests of a few states”‚ he said during his address to the UN General Assembly.

“The African continent remains committed through the African Union (AU) and its peace and security architecture to resolve the remaining conflict areas. We have committed ourselves to silence the guns by 2020,” Zuma said.

But‚ he added‚ “the situation in Libya‚ Nigeria, South Sudan and the Central African Republic remains a continental priority”.

“We strongly urge the UN Security Council to better align and coordinate with the African Union in efforts to bring about peace in these sister countries and the continent at large‚” said Zuma.

“We appeal to the UN Security Council in particular to support African peace operations so that we can achieve this noble goal.”

He reminded leaders that “South Africa had been calling for‚ and we will continue to call for‚ the fundamental reform of the UN’s Security Council, in order to ensure the representation of Africa”.

Zuma also raised “the deadlock in the Security Council on the Syrian question”‚ and said: “We must therefore‚ ask ourselves if the UN‚ and in particular the UN Security Council as currently configured‚ can fulfil its mandate in addressing the challenges of the 21st century?”