Stop fighting and focus on COVID-19 common enemy - UN Chief

Calling for a global ceasefire to become a reality by the end of the year, the Secretary General of the UN António Guterres in his message for the International Day of Non-Violence emphasized that

“On this year’s observance, we have a special duty: stop the fighting to focus on our common enemy: COVID-19. Highlighting the remarkable power of non-violence and peaceful protest, the International Day of Non-Violence is observed on October 2, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement and pioneer of the philosophy and strategy of non-violence.

“On this year’s observance, we have a special duty: stop the fighting to focus on our common enemy: COVID-19. There is only one winner of conflict during a pandemic: the virus itself. As the pandemic took hold, I called for a global ceasefire. Today we need a new push by the international community to make this a reality by the end of this year. Cease-fires would ease immense suffering, help to lower the risk of famine, and create space for negotiations towards peace,” said the Secretary General.

“Deep mistrust stands in the way. Yet I see reasons for hope. In some places, we see a standstill in the violence. A great many Member States, religious leaders, civil society networks and others back my call. Now is the time to intensify our efforts. Let us be inspired by the spirit of Gandhi and the enduring principles of the UN Charter,” he said in his message.

 

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