Djibouti: Kenya and Djibouti Faces Off for UN Security Council Seat

United Nations members are scheduled to vote today for new non-permanent members of the Security Council in a race that could test future relations of Kenya and Djibouti.

The vote will be conducted virtually although it will still be a secret ballot, due to measures meant to contain spread of coronavirus.

Kenya, Djibouti, India, Mexico, Canada, Ireland and Norway have all fronted their candidature, but the actual race is between Kenya and Djibouti, two African countries bidding to replace South Africa on the UN's most powerful organ.

Traditionally, each region of the world is allocated seats to the Council, but the voting is a formality as the regions often agree on a candidate.

For Kenya and Djibouti, the voting will be the climax of a bare knuckle campaigns that has forced African countries to take sides and at the African Union Summit last February, Kenya complained of Djibouti's "dishonourable" campaign.

Diplomatic overtures, as well as an attempt for mediation by then AU chairperson Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, seemed to have failed to have one drop from the race. Nairobi won the African Union endorsement last August, but Djibouti stuck in the race, arguing the AU decision was "illegal."

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