Concern welcomes UN Secretary General's Appeal for Global Ceasefire

Secretary-General António Guterres speaks at his global town hall meeting with United Nations staff members. Photo: UN Media
Secretary-General António Guterres speaks at his global town hall meeting with United Nations staff members. Photo: UN Media

Concern Worldwide welcomes the urgent appeal by the United Nations Secretary General for an immediate global ceasefire by all warring parties to enable the world tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.

At the same time as COVID-19 is spreading, armed conflict continues to rage around the world, António Guterres said. Those who paid the highest price of war – women and children, people with disabilities, the marginalised and the displaced – would also suffer the greatest losses from the virus, he warned.

“The Secretary General’s call could not be more urgent,” Concern CEO Dominic MacSorley said. “As the World Health Organisation warns that the pandemic is now accelerating rapidly, there are grave fears for its impact where health and sanitation infrastructure has been devastated by conflict.”

Where those displaced by conflict have been forced to flee in great numbers, the threat posed by the spread of the virus is almost unimaginable, Mr MacSorley said. Currently an estimated 71 million people globally have been displaced by conflict, according to the UNHCR.

“It is vital that all warring parties heed the Secretary General’s call to ensure access, to ‘open the corridors of life-saving aid’ in order to support the world’s most vulnerable people at this critical moment,” Mr MacSorley said.

For media queries contact Eamon Timmins, Media Relations Manager, Concern Worldwide, at eamon.timmins@concern.net or 087 9880524

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