United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday said that possibility of expanding the Security Council is now “seriously on the table” but added that he is not sure whether it would include the right to veto.

“I think that there is now space for a much more serious discussion in relation to the Security Council reform,” Guterres. “I’m still not optimistic about [reforming] the right of veto.”

Guterres made the remarks in response to a question during his annual end-of-year conference in New York.

The Security Council is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations. It has five permanent members, including China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, and ten non-permanent members such as India. The permanent members have the power to veto any substantive resolution.

India has repeatedly pushed for permanent membership of the council.

At Tuesday’s conference, Guterres said that the expansion of the Security Council was a matter for the member states and that the Secretariat had no influence in it.

“I think that the during our General Assembly session in September, for the first time, I heard from the United States and from Russia clearly the indication that they were in favour of an enlargement of the number of permanent members of the Security Council,” the United Nations chief said.

He also added that there was a proposal from France and the United Kingdom for some restrictions in the use of the right to veto.

On December 15, Guterres had said that the majority of UN members acknowledge the need for reforms within the Security Council.

“A majority of UN member countries now acknowledge that the Security Council should be reformed to reflect today’s geopolitical realities,” he had said. “I hope regional groups and countries can work together to achieve greater consensus on the way forward and the modalities of reform.”

Prior to this, on December 12, India had shared a concept note ahead of a United Nations Security Council meeting saying reform in the bodies has been left open-ended without a set timeline and the Security Council is far from reflecting true diversity, according to PTI.

“The world is not the same as it was 77 years ago,” the note had said. “The 193 States Members of the United Nations are more than triple the 55 Member States that it had in 1945. However, the composition of the Security Council, responsible for global peace and security, was last fixed in 1965 and is far from reflecting the true diversity of the wider membership of the United Nations.”