India along with Brazil, Germany and Japan on Tuesday called for reforming the United Nations Security Council in order to safeguard the body’s legitimacy and credibility. These four countries, which make up the G-4 bloc, issued a joint statement after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj hosted her counterparts Aloysio Nunes Ferreira of Brazil, Heiko Maas of Germany and Taro Kono of Japan in New York.

The four countries said that reforms to the 15-nation Security Council were needed to adapt the UN to the “contemporary needs of the 21st century”. This would include an expansion of both permanent and non-permanent categories of membership. They observed that no “substantial progress” had been made ever since after the matter of increased membership of the Security Council was added to the agenda in 1979. Even at the 2005 World Summit, all government leaders had unanimously supported the “early reform” of the Security Council.

“The G-4 ministers reaffirmed the need for an early reform of the Council, including the expansion of both permanent and non-permanent categories of membership, to enhance its legitimacy, effectiveness and representativeness,” read the statement. The countries added that they will support each other’s bids for membership.

The ministers said that the G-4 will increase dialogue with other “like-minded” nations and groups to achieve “meaningful progress” in the upcoming session of the Intergovernmental Negotiations. The G-4 will support Africa’s representation in both the permanent and non-permanent membership of an expanded Security Council, said the statement.