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Power: U.S. will push Security Council seat for Israel

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Samantha Power, President Obama’s nominee to be U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said she would press for Israel to have a rotation on the Security Council.

“The Security Council seat is one that has eluded Israel, despite its many contributions across the years, and I commit to you wholeheartedly to go on offense,” Power told Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, during her confirmation hearing on Wednesday.

Menendez has pressed for such a rotation, which for decades has eluded Israel, in part because it does not belong to any of the regional groupings that advance nominations for temporary membership on the council.

The council has 15 members, five of them — Britain, France, China, the United States and Russia — are permanent. The 10 non-permanent members serve for two years.

The council is the U.N.’s most powerful body and helps shape international law.

Power also said she would “make every effort to secure greater integration of Israeli public servants in the U.N. system.”

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