5 new countries join UN Security Council

Posted at 10/19/2012 1:41 AM | Updated as of 10/19/2012 2:32 AM

UNITED NATIONS - Rwanda, Argentina, Australia, South Korea and Luxembourg won non-permanent seats on the UN Security Council on Thursday.

Each needed at least 129 votes from among the 193 member states of the UN General Assembly.

Rwanda got 148, while Australia took 140 and Argentina 182. South Korea's tally was 149 votes, and Luxembourg's 131 after a second round of voting.

In the Asia-Pacific region South Korea needed the second round to beat Bhutan and Cambodia while, in the so-called "Western European and Others" group, Luxembourg prevailed over Finland.

Each year the 15-member council, the UN's most powerful committee, renews five of its 10 non-permanent seats, assigning them on a regional basis.

The five holders of new seats take them up in January for a two-year stint.

The permanent members, wielding veto power, are the United States, China, France, Britain and Russia.