Resolution for Global Ceasefire Presented to UN Security Council

The United Nations headquarters in New York The United Nations headquarters in New York Reuters photo

12 May 2020

The new resolution, drafted by Germany and Estonia, replaces one vetoed by the U.S.

Diplomats from Germany and Estonia drafted a new resolution that called for a global ceasefire amid the COVID-19 crisis. The resolution aims to make it easier for humanitarian aid groups to distribute relief packages to 20 countries that are currently at conflict. During the proposed ceasefire, these countries will be given aid and funding to fight coronavirus. The resolution replaces a previous draft written by France and Tunisia which was vetoed by the United States. This new resolution calls for a 90-day ceasefire period. 

The previous draft, which was disagreed upon by both American and Chinese diplomats, was vetoed by the United States last week. Originally, American diplomats agreed with the proposal, but later changed their position by insisting that the World Health Organization (WHO) should not be mentioned in the draft. This reversal came after weeks of President Trump scrutinizing WHO’s response to the coronavirus crisis in its early days. Chinese diplomats planned to use their own veto if WHO was not directly mentioned, but later agreed to the proposal making implicit reference to the organization. 

The new resolution has only five major points compared to the previous draft’s nine points. Estonia, which currently holds the rotating presidency of the Security Council, proposed the new draft with support from German diplomats. Once the draft was proposed, China commented that it called for swift action from the council. If none of the five permanent members of the Security Council veto the draft, a vote could be taken within the coming days. The UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, hopes that agreement could be met as violence increases in countries such as Afghanistan, Libya, and Yemen.


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Author: Vito Quaglia

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