Abdulla Shahid, President of the seventy-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly, addresses the Security Council meeting on maintenance of international peace and security. Photo: UN Photo/ Evan Schneider

UNITED NATIONS—The UN General Assembly approved a resolution Dec. 6 delaying action on requests by Myanmar’s military junta and Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers to take their countries’ seats at the United Nations.

Assembly President Abdulla Shahid banged his gavel to approve the measure by consensus, without a vote.

The decision by the 193-member world body means that the ambassadors from the ousted governments in Myanmar and Afghanistan will remain in their jobs.

The resolution was introduced by Sweden’s UN Ambassador Anna Enestrom, chair of the General Assembly’s Credentials Committee, which recommended recently that the United Nations defer a decision on the credentials of the two countries. She said the nine-member committee has not scheduled another meeting and would not say how long the issue of credentials for Myanmar and Afghanistan would be deferred.


Myanmar’s military rulers sought to replace the country’s ambassador to the United Nations, Kyaw Moe Tun, who opposed their Feb. 1 ouster of civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and takeover of the government.

Foreign Minister Wunna Maung Lwin said in July that he had been terminated “due to abuses of his assigned duty and mandate” and that Aung Thurein, who left the military this year after 26 years, had been appointed as Myanmar’s UN ambassador.

The Taliban challenged the credentials of Ghulam Isaczai, the ambassador from Afghanistan’s former government which they ousted on Aug. 15 and sought to replace him with a new UN permanent representative, Mohammad Suhail Shaheen, who was a Taliban spokesman during peace negotiations in Qatar.

The Credentials Committee’s decision to defer action means that Myanmar’s Thurein and the Taliban’s Shaheen will not replace their predecessors—at least for now.

The members of the credentials committee are Sweden, the United States, Russia, China, Bahamas, Bhutan, Chile, Namibia and Sierra Leone. (AP)