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Lack of Leadership in GA1 Causing Confusion

As anyone who has ever been interested in international politics knows, whether you like it or not some States exude more influence than others, especially when it comes to voting. Even though every State receives one vote, powerful States such as the United States, United Kingdom, China, France and Russian Federation can often shift support around any particular resolution.

Monday evening, as the GA First Committee considered resolutions to counter the threat posed by IEDs, there was a sense in the Committee that the smaller States wanted larger Member States’ leadership to best decide what resolutions to support, given r alliances and for mutual benefit. Some powerful States did not do anything to get votes or to lead their blocs which led other States to take over the leadership roles. As a result other States did not want to follow this lead because they didn’t believe they could benefit from any resolutions that did not have the support of the powerful Member States. 

This lack of leadership led to significant challenges, with Stated ultimately abstaining from voting on certain resolutions such as the one proposed by Afghanistan Monday evening. States like Belgium and Albania who are part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) voting bloc abstained on this particular resolution while some NATO leaders like the UK and the US voted to support it.

When asked why they  abstained, , Albania said that they were only abstaining to please their partners and allies in the NATO bloc even though,as mentioned earlier, that is not what the actual leadership wanted. When asked the same question, Belgium explained that they did not feel concerned by this subject, as not to influence the vote because they did not lean to either side.

It is also worth mentioning that China used this lack of clear leadership to get some NATO States’ votes in a failed attempt to reject this resolution.

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