NEW YORK (DPA) - The Philippines, Brazil, Romania, Benin, and Algeria were expected last night to be elected members of the UN Security Council, the highest political body in the world organization, a spokeswoman said Wednesday.
The 191-nation UN General Assembly was to vote on the new members of the council yesterday.
The five countries were chosen by countries in their respective regions as sole candidates.
The UN council has 15 members, five of which are permanent - the United States, Russia, China, France, and Britain. Ten are elected to serve two- year terms.
The five countries whose term will expire on Dec. 31 are Syria, Mexico, Bulgaria, Cameroon, and Guinea.
They will be replaced by the Philippines, Brazil, Romania, Benin, and Algeria.
The other five member countries, whose term will expire on Dec. 31, 2004, are Spain, Germany, Pakistan, Angola, and Chile.
The UN council makes most political decisions in the organization, an authority that confers prestige on its members as its resolutions are binding.
The 10 elected seats rotate among the world's five regions.
To avoid unnecessary competition, those regions usually decide which countries should sit in the council before presenting them to the General Assembly for a final vote by the UN membership.
With a few hours left before formal voting began in the United Nations General Assembly, Foreign Affairs Secretary Blas F. Ople yesterday expressed his deep appreciation for the support that has been given for the candidature of the Philippines to a non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council.
"We have received a large number of formal manifestations of support. …