Home Meetings & Statements Events & Activities China & UN Documents About China 中文
  Home > The Permanent Mission > Ambassador Zhang Jun, PR > Ambassador Zhang's Activities, Speeches & Remarks
Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Jun at Security Council Open Debate "Maintenance of International Peace and Security: Pandemics and Security"

2020-07-02 03:31

Mr. President,

China welcomes Foreign Minister Mr. Maas in chairing this open debate. We congratulate Germany on the assumption of Security Council Presidency for the month of July and commend France for the enormous efforts made during its Presidency in June. I also thank Secretary-General, President of the ICRC and AU Commissioner for their briefings.

The sudden outbreak of COVID-19 is wreaking havoc with the world, killing tens of thousands of people. We mourn for the deceased and express deep condolences to their families. We pay tribute to the front-line medical workers for their sacrifice and contributions.

COVID-19 continues to spread across the world. Countries all face the daunting tasks of fighting disease, saving lives, stabilizing economy and ensuring livelihood. We must put people and life first, do our utmost to protect people’s safety and health, and minimize the impact of the virus.

The pandemic once again proves that we live in a global village and have a shared destiny. Solidarity and cooperation is the most powerful weapon in fighting the pandemic. China is ready to work with all parties, uphold the UN-centered international system, and support the WHO in contributing more to the global fight against COVID-19.

Mr. President,

COVID-19 has brought challenges to the maintenance of international peace and security. The Security Council should take actions in the following four aspects:

First, accelerating the implementation of the Secretary-General’s appeal for a global ceasefire. The Security Council has adopted the resolution endorsing the appeal. The international community should seize the opportunity to encourage the parties to conflict to respond to the appeal, immediately cease hostilities, jointly fight the pandemic, save lives and seek peaceful settlement through political and diplomatic means. From the very beginning, China has been supportive of the Secretary-General’s appeal and is one of the 172 member states and observers that issued a joint statement of support to the appeal. China has been constructively engaged in consultations on the draft 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. In this regard, we thank the efforts made by France and Tunisia.

Second, stepping up humanitarian assistance. The pandemic has exacerbated the humanitarian situation in the conflict regions and countries. China welcomes the Global Humanitarian Response Plan proposed by the Secretary-General, and highly appreciates the tireless efforts by the WHO, ICRC and other UN health and humanitarian specialized agencies in coordinating and providing health assistance. At the same time, humanitarian assistance should abide by the UN Charter and principles established by GA resolution 46/182. Special attention should be given to vulnerable groups such as women, children, the elderly and persons with disabilities. Efforts should also be made to protect humanitarian workers.

Third, making every effort to ensure safety and security of peacekeepers. China appreciates the effective measures taken by the Secretariat and peacekeeping missions to regulate the conduct of peacekeepers, increase medical devices and readjust replacement policies to bring down risks of infection for peacekeeping missions. We hope the member states and the Secretariat will continue to fully implement the Security Council resolution 2518, help the troop contributing countries and peacekeeping missions strengthen early warning, health support, critical medical capacity, and improve training to truly safeguard life and health of peacekeepers.

Fourth, supporting removal of unilateral coercive measures. Unilateral coercive measures run counter to multilateralism and contravene the basic norms of international relations. They undermine sanctioned countries’ capability to fight COVID-19 and ensure livelihood, making innocent civilians the biggest victims. The Security Council should actively respond to the Secretary-General’s appeal, and urge relevant countries to act in a humanitarian spirit to immediately lift unilateral coercive measures amid COVID-19. The Security Council, bearing in mind its mandate, should also explore how to fundamentally eliminate unilateral coercive measures to lesson the sufferings of affected countries and peoples.

Mr. President,

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, China has provided assistance in various forms to more than 150 countries and international organizations, including all those on the agenda of the Security Council. China has proposed recommendations and measures on the global fight against COVID-19, including its decisions to make its vaccine, once available, a global public good, provide 2 billion US dollars in international aid to affected countries, especially developing countries, cancel government interest-free loans owed by African countries due to mature by the end of 2020, and implement the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative. To strengthen international coordination, China also held an extraordinary China-Africa summit on solidarity against COVID-19 and a High-level Video Conference for international cooperation in the framework of Belt and Road Initiative.

Virus respects no borders or races. Solidarity and cooperation is the only right way. Politicizing and stigmatizing lead to nowhere. Countries should take up responsibilities, respect science, replace differences with unity, dispel prejudice with reason, form synergies in the global fight, and build a better future for all.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Suggest to a friend