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Africa should be better represented on UN council-Chirac

18th November 2003

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French President Jacques Chirac yesterday reiterated his support for an overhaul of the UN Security Council, insisting after talks with South African President Thabo Mbeki that Africa should have more of a say.

"It's up to our African partners to define their priorities," Chirac told a joint press conference with Mbeki at the start of the South African leader's three-day state visit to France.

"But it's clear that in one way or another, Africa must be better represented on the Security Council, among the permanent and non-permanent members," the French president added.

Chirac voiced his support for the eventual enlargement of the UN body, voicing support for Germany and Japan to become permanent veto-wielding members.

Mbeki said he and Chirac did not discuss the issue and explained that African nations were still deciding how to approach the question but noted: "There will be a view that comes out of the continent".

France is one of five permanent members on the UN Security Council, along with Britain, China, Russia and the US.

Ten other non-permanent members are chosen on a regional basis for two-year Council terms.

Brazil, India and South Africa are among those states that have lobbied for a permanent seat on the council - thus far to no avail. – Sapa-AFP.

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