COVID-19: UN Security Council To Meet Over Pandemic

COVID-19: UN Security Council To Meet Over Pandemic

4/9/2020 10:53:00 AM

COVID-19: UN Security Council To Meet Over Pandemic

COVID-19: UN Security Council To Meet Over Pandemic

There are two competing texts up for debate.One, spearheaded by Tunisia on behalf of the 10 non-permanent members and obtained by AFP, calls for “an urgent, coordinated and united international action to curb the impact of COVID-19” and urges an immediate global ceasefire on humanitarian grounds.

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That draft resolution has been in development since March 30, though a vote on it is not yet scheduled.The second text, proposed by France, focuses on Guterres’s call last month to cease all hostilities around the world as part of a “humanitarian pause” to fight the pandemic.

That one has so far only had input from the permanent members, which diplomats from non-permanent countries told AFP has been “very frustrating.”Efforts to convene a meeting have been stymied by the hospitalization of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Chinese reticence to participate without first setting a clear agenda.

Richard Gowen, a specialist at the International Crisis Group, told AFP: “It is important to recognize that the main driving force behind the cooperation of the 10 non-permanent members is the bad behavior of the five permanent members.”Several of these non-permanent workers “waged a fierce campaign to win their seat” on the Council and “are dumbfounded by the bickering between China and the United States” that prevent the body from “agreeing on the great crisis of our time.”

A Western ambassador, speaking anonymously, said the two blocs needed each other.“The permanent cannot pass a text without the voices of the non-permanent, the non-permanent cannot impose a text on the permanent because they have a veto. We must necessarily agree and we will try to ‘hear’,” they said.

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