UN chief urges Security Council to be united on coronavirus pandemic

Guterres speaks to the press at United Nations headquarters in the Manhattan borough of New York. (File photo: Reuters)

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called Thursday for the Security Council to unite in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, calling it “the fight of a generation – and the ‘raison d’être’ of the United Nations itself.”

“A signal of unity and resolve from the Council would count for a lot at this anxious time,” he told the group which was holding its first meeting on the new coronavirus by videoconference.

The contents of Guterres’ speech was relayed to AFP by diplomats attending the session, which was still ongoing.

Guterres, who spoke to Al Arabiya last week, said that the coronavirus is “the biggest threat that humankind is facing at the present moment.”

“It is also true that many movements and many governments that are parties to the conflict around the world have also said that they were ready to abide by the ceasefire. But the reality is that on the ground, it has been extremely difficult to implement it,” Guterres said last week.

“If humans go on trying to defeat other humans, the virus will defeat all the humans and the virus will win this battle in Syria or in Yemen or in Libya. We need to avoid it. And for that, we need the ceasefire here in these countries, as in all others, to make sure that we are able to join efforts to fight the biggest threat that humankind is facing at the present moment, the COVID-19,” the UN chief added.

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Last Update: 06:57 KSA 09:57 - GMT 06:57
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