COVID-19 raises fragility of conflict-ridden countries: Indonesian FM hinh anh 1Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi. (Photo: Citizen Daily)

Jakarta (VNA) – The COVID-19 pandemic has raised the fragility of conflict-ridden countries and even risk them to fall back into crisis, Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi told a UN Security Council debate on August 13.

Indonesia holds presidency of the council for this month.

In her remarks as chair of the virtual debate on the pandemic and challenges of sustaining peace, Retno underlined three points in response to this crisis.

First, sustaining peace must be part of the comprehensive response to this pandemic. Countries must ensure the inclusive participation of local stakeholders in sustaining peace agenda and the international community must create conducive international environment to sustain peace during the pandemic.

Second, sustaining peace requires synergy between the works of all UN system. In this regard, the UN should integrate conflict-sensitive approach into its pandemic response. General cessation of hostilities and humanitarian pause would enable timely delivery of aid and COVID-19 treatments to civilians in conflicts.

Third, it is important that countries optimise the use of the limited resources at hand for sustaining peace, as the majority of these countries are now faced with a hard choice between spending on health infrastructure or peacebuilding.

Indonesia's leadership in setting the agenda for this month's UNSC sessions are welcomed by Council members. Several high-ranking officials of UNSC member states, including Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam, South Africa, Estonia, as well as Minister of State of Germany participated in the meeting./.