Article 19 of the UN Charter: Iran loses voting rights in the United Nations General Assembly

Iran and six other countries have lost their voting rights in the United Nations General Assembly as they had not paid their dues. The other countries that lost their voting rights were Niger, South Sudan, Zimbabwe, Congo Brazzaville, Central African Republic and Libya. On the other hand, three other countries such as Comoros, Somalia, Sao Tome and Principe will be allowed to vote despite of their missing dues.

The actions of suspending the members from voting has been taken under Article 19 of the United Nations Charter.

Article 19 of UN Charter

According to the Article 19 of the UN Charter, a member shall have no voting rights if it has arrears in the payment of its financial contributions to the UN. The Charter provided two years of grace period. That is, if the arrears are pending for more than two years, then the voting rights are suspended.


Iran owes 16.2 million USD to the United Nations. According to Iran, the US sanctions is troubling the country in paying its contribution to the UN.

United Nations Budget Contributions

The US is the highest contributor of the UN. The United States contributed 22% of the UN budget, China contributes 12%, Japan contributes 8.574% and Germany contributes 6.090%. These four countries together finance 49% of the entire UN budget.


India is one among the thirty-four United Nations members to pay the budget dues on time. In January 2020, India paid 23, 396, 496 USD to the United Nations as its contribution.

Determination of UN Budget

Every three years, the UN Members collectively decide on the formula called “Scales of Assessment”. The formula decides how much currency should each member contribute to the UN regular budget and to peace keeping operations.

The formula is highly complicated. It begins with the Gross National Income of the country. Later adjustments are applied taking account where the country is relative to average global income per head. A ceiling and a minimum floor is applied to Least Developed Countries.


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