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President Kaljulaid to Secretary-General Guterres: the current pandemic is a security threat

President Kaljulaid to Secretary-General Guterres: the current pandemic is a security threat © Mattias tammet/office of the president

30.04.2020

„Estonia intends to keep the COVID-19 crisis on the table of the security council during our presidency because it is a threat to world security,“ President Kaljulaid said today in a phone conversation with the UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

As the pandemic has left the people in conflict areas especially vulnerable, the UN Secretary-General has proposed a worldwide ceasefire. President Kaljulaid assured Guterres that Estonia supports this plea.

Since Estonia will hold the Presidency of the UN Security Council in May, President Kaljulaid also gave an overview of Estonia´s goals. „The pandemic has demonstrated the importance of technology and the opportunities of the digital world. For the first time in history, the UN Security Council is meeting digitally over video. This is a good opportunity for Estonia to show how to engage countries, ensure effective work and transparency of the council even in such extraordinary times,“ President Kaljulaid explained.

Secretary-General Guterres commended the President of Estonia for her active role as the Co-Chair of the Every Woman Every Child movement, which stands for the health of women and children. One of the priorities of President Kaljulaid has been to raise awareness on the heroism of those who improve the situation of women and children on their initiative.

The role of the UN Security Council is to stand for peace and security in the world. Estonia is one of its non-permanent members for the next two years and from May 1 will have the presidency of the council for a month.

„The current crisis has given many countries the impetus to raise their technological capabilities and to develop different e-services, but it is very important to assist those, who do not have the possibilities for such leap to ensure that there will be no digital divide,“ President Kaljulaid stressed after the phone call and expressed hope that Estonia will be able to offer assistance during our presidency. Estonia also intends to bring to the table the topics of cybersecurity and European security. International law and protection of civilians will also remain under discussion.

The Security Council consists of 15 countries, of which the United States, Russia, France, the United Kingdom and China are permanent members. Together with Estonia, four new elected members Niger, Tunisia, Vietnam and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines started, while Belgium, Germany, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia and South Africa continue their membership.

Communications Department
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