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Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Jun in Explanation of China's Vote for Security Council Draft Resolution on COVID-19

2020-07-01 03:11

China voted in favor of the Security Council draft resolution on COVID-19. COVID-19 is the most severe global challenge facing the world today. The Security Council shoulders the primary responsibility of maintaining international peace and security, and at this critical moment, the Council is duty-bound to take action within its mandates to tackle the negative impact of COVID-19 on international peace and security.

Reaching this resolution demonstrates the general consensus of Council members and UN member states in supporting bigger roles of the UN and its specialized agencies and strengthened solidarity and cooperation in the fight against COVID-19. It shows the Council's ability to act and its leadership. This is an important outcome for the Council and the UN and a victory of multilateralism. China thanks France and Tunisia for their tireless efforts as the pen-holders and appreciates the responsible and cooperative attitude of the vast majority of Council members.

This resolution has not come easily. Some country has insisted on a unilateral stance, ignoring the call of the international community. It went back on its words and broke its promise and the consensus, delaying the process of consultation again and again. The Council thus hampered from taking action to support the Secretary-General's appeal for a global ceasefire and the Global Humanitarian Response Plan. This country has also refused to lift unilateral coercive measures against relevant countries, turning a blind eye to the call of the Secretary-General and countries around the world. This has worsened the suffering of innocent civilians and the humanitarian crisis in some countries and regions amid COVID-19.

From the very beginning, China has been supportive of the Secretary-General's appeal for a global ceasefire and the Global Humanitarian Response Plan, and voiced its support on various occasions. Most recently, China is one of the 172 member states and observers that issued the joint statement of support to the Secretary-General's appeal for a global ceasefire. China has been constructively engaged in the consultations of the current resolution, worked tirelessly with most of the Council members to build widest possible consensus, and showed maximum flexibility. As a result, we have managed to overcome all obstacles and ensure that the Council is able to send a positive message of solidarity and cooperation at this difficult time.

China appreciates that the resolution refers to GA resolution 74/270, which shows Member States' full recognition of the central role played by the UN and the WHO in the global fight against COVID-19. China welcomes the concept of putting the people at the center included in the resolution. This is conducive to addressing root causes of conflicts, and is highly significant as it reflects the demands and concerns of developing countries.

China calls on the international community to seize the opportunity of the adoption of the resolution to encourage parties to conflict to respond to the Secretary-General's appeal for a global ceasefire, immediately cease hostilities, work together to combat COVID-19, save lives, commit to resolve disputes peacefully through political and diplomatic means, ensure access of humanitarian assistance and strengthen safety and security for peacekeepers.

COVID-19 is a common enemy of mankind. Facing this unprecedented test, all countries should put the people at the center, always put lives and health of the people first, and do the utmost to save lives. It is imperative to adopt a responsible attitude and resolute measures to fight the virus, follow science, and reject politicizing, labeling and stigmatizing. We should carry out international cooperation and work together against COVID-19, in particular to assist developing countries.

China has consistently given top priority to people and their lives. China has adopted the most comprehensive, thorough and stringent measures, which have helped to bring the outbreak under control with the lowest possible cost. Meanwhile, China is working for recovery and carrying out international cooperation. China has provided support to more than 150 countries and international organizations, including all those on the agenda of the Security Council.

The Council's adoption of the resolution once again proves that multilateralism is the only right choice for a world faced with multiple challenges, while unilateralism has no support and will only come to a dead end. At this critical juncture, China firmly takes the side of multilateralism, the vast majority of member states, and fairness and justice. China calls upon all countries to envisage a global community with a shared future, advance multilateralism, strengthen solidarity and collaboration, and uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and the UN-centered international system to jointly create a better future for mankind.

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