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UN Security Council Meets Over COVID-19 Pandemic

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The United Nations Security Council held a meeting today to discuss the COVID-19 pandemic for the first time.

Naija News learnt that  nine of the council’s 10 non-permanent members requested the closed-door meeting — a video conference to maintain social distancing.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is expected to focus on efforts to fight the pandemic, peacekeeping missions and fostering unity between the non-permanent members and the five permanent ones.

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.

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.



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