Foreign Minister - Poland has entered global politics as a UN Security Council member

Minister Waszczykowski Paweł Supernak

Poland's non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council is a ticket to global politics, according to Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski, who stressed that during its two-year term, Warsaw wanted to focus on strengthening international law.

The national flag of Poland was hoisted on Tuesday morning at the UN headquarters in New York. The ceremony of exchanging national flags marked the start of term for six new non-permanent members.

"I'm pleased that after twenty years Poland has returned to the UN Security Council. Our priorities will include strengthening international law as well as prevention, and our trademark will be the combination of security issues with growth," Witold Waszczykowski was quoted as saying in a Foreign Ministry press release on Tuesday.

The ministry also quoted Poland's ambassador to the UN, Joanna Wronecka, who said that the support the country had received during the vote on new UN SC members proved the international community trusted and appreciated Poland and its involvement in maintaining international peace and security.

"It is also a huge obligation and challenge for us to make good use of the Security Council membership in order to seek effective solutions to global challenges that we face in the area of peace and security," Wronecka said.

Poland will assume the presidency of the Council in May and again in the second half of 2019.

During its term, Poland will sit on the Council together with its five permanent members, China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States. Other non-permanent members include three representatives of Africa (Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea and Ivory Coast), two Latin American states (Bolivia and Peru), two Asian and Arab members (Kazakhstan and Kuwait) and two Western European representatives (the Netherlands and Sweden).

The Security Council is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations, charged with the maintenance of international peace and security.

Apart from the Polish flag, national colours of Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Kuwait, the Netherlands and Peru were also flown at Tuesday's ceremony.

The countries replace Ukraine, Egypt, Japan, Italy, Uruguay and Senegal, which concluded their terms with the end of 2017.

The ceremony was held at the initiative of Kazakhstan, which in January took over the monthly presidency of the Council, PAP was told by Poland's Permanent Delegation to the UN.

On January 1, Poland became a UN SC non-permanent member for the sixth time. The country's previous terms were in 1946-1947, 1960 (term shared with Turkey), 1970-1971 and 1982-1983. Poland served its fifth term as a fully-independent state in 1996-1997.