New York: Japan's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Kimihiro Ishikane appreciated India's contributions to the work of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) during its presidency and said that New Delhi's diplomatic skill affected the council's business last month.

After taking the presidency of the UNSCl, Ambassador Ishikane said, "I shall also take this opportunity to express the council's gratitude to the outgoing members namely India, Ireland, Kenya, Mexico and Norway for their important contributions to the work of the council during their terms. I should also like to take this opportunity to pay tribute on behalf of the council to Her Excellency, Ruchira Kamboj, the parliament representative of India, for her service as president of the council for the month of December."

"I am sure I speak for all members of the council in expressing deep appreciation to Ambassador Kamboj and her team for the great diplomatic skill with which their conduct affected the council's business last month," he added.

Japan assumed the presidency of the council in January 2023 and is expected to face the difficult task of leading efforts to change Russia's conduct, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said, according to Japan Times.

At a news conference on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi stressed the need to start action to realize Security Council reform.

It is unclear, however, whether member countries can act in unison over the reform, reported Japan Times.

"Countries are facing pressure to choose a side over the war in Ukraine now," a Foreign Ministry source said.

On January 12, Hayashi is slated to host a public debate on the rule of law among ministerial officials from Security Council member countries.

"The point is, you shouldn't let participants divide into friends and enemies," said a Foreign Ministry official, adding, "Few countries would oppose the U.N. Charter or international law."

To gain a foothold for Security Council reform, Japan aims first for the sharing of basic values among Security Council members, as per Japan Times.

Japan has long expressed its ambition to become a permanent member of a reformed Security Council, along with countries such as Germany, India and Brazil, according to Japan Times.