New York – For UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the corona crisis is the greatest challenge to the world since World War II.
Guterres said at the end of a video conference that this challenge, therefore, needed a “stronger and more effective answer” that could only be mastered through the solidarity of everyone involved. “The world is facing an unprecedented test,” said the UN chief. “And now is the moment of truth.”
The UN Secretary-General was dissatisfied with what he saw as a sluggish global response to the fight against the coronavirus. “We’re slowly moving in the right direction, but we have to be faster and do a lot more if we want to beat the virus.” Among other things, there is still no coordinated action by all countries under the leadership of the World Health Organization (WHO). Their guidelines are still ignored in many parts of the world.
Guterres presented a UN plan on Tuesday to address the corona crisis and its social and economic consequences: “The scale of the response must be as large as that of the crisis,” he said. The focus is on cooperation and shared responsibility among the countries of the world. According to the UN, a multi-trillion dollar aid package is needed to help the poorer countries fight the pandemic. The focus is also on cooperation in the scientific field – developed vaccinations and treatment methods must be made available to all people in the same way.
“We need to increase the resources available to developing countries by increasing the capacity of the International Monetary Fund,” said Guterres. In addition to curbing the virus, it was important to cushion the social and economic impact, especially on the most severely affected. These included women, the elderly, young people, and low-income workers, as well as small businesses.