HL Deb 12 February 1997 vol 578 c21WA
Lord Kennet

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they consider that Article 19 of the Charter of the United Nations, which states that a member in arrears "shall have no vote in the General Assembly" unless the General Assembly "is satisfied that the failure to pay is due to conditions beyond the control of the member" should be applied in the case of the United States, particularly in view of its $260 billion defence budget.

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Chalker of Wallasey)

Under Article 19 of the United Nations Charter, a member state loses its vote in the General Assembly only when the amount of its arrears equals or exceeds the amount of contributions due from it for the preceding two full years. US arrears are not yet at this level.

The EU proposals for financial reform include measures to tighten the application of Article 19.