Monica Nkenganyi
AmbaNews24, New York, USA

Amidst the coronavirus pandemic that is ravaging the world’s healthcare system, social networks and economic viability, the UN Security Council on March 30, 2020, adopted by unanimous email votes, four resolutions. Members voted to keep peacekeeping forces in Sudan’s Darfur until end of May, to maintain UN’s political mission in Somalia until June 30, to extend the mandate of the UN panel of experts monitoring sanctions against North Korea until April 30, 2021, and emphasized the importance of UN peacekeeping missions.

However, the Security Council did not adopt any resolution dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Critics have wondered why.

AmbaNews24 has learnt from Ambazonia’s diplomat, Dr Larry Ayamba, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the Ambazonia Governing Council (AGovC) that there is a draft resolution circulating among the fifteen members of the UN Security that focuses on the COVID-19 pandemic as a threat to global peace and security, and calls for a coordinated and multilateral global response. Two reliable diplomats from two countries at the UN have, however, informed AmbaNews24 that the resolution is “hitting a wall in the Security Council because of ceasefire and blame game politics.”

Donald Trump at one of his daily Coronavirus Press Briefing

On the matter of ceasefire, France took this up and is championing the UN Chief, Antonio Guterres’ call for a universal ceasefire in all conflicts to enable the world deal with the COVID-19 pandemic – although France itself has offered no concrete commitment to what its posture in the conflicts it is fighting in the Sahel will be. The Donald Trump administration joined in the advocacy for the cessation of hostilities but also offered no concrete commitment to what the USA’s immediate posture will be in places such as Afghanistan and Somalia.

At a Press Conference on Monday this week, Zhang Jun, China’s UN Ambassador joined the train and said, “we are calling for cessation of hostilities, we are calling for ceasefire, and we are calling for unhindered access for humanitarian access.”

Russia, however, issued a statement calling for a humanitarian pause in conflicts only in some regions. With interest in its involvement in the Syrian conflict, the Russian Foreign Ministry issued a blunt statement that said, “We are highly concerned over the situation on territories controlled by terrorist groups, who could not care less about people’s wellbeing . . . .We are confident that counter-terrorist measures must be carried on.”

With this position, Russia opposes a UN Security Council Resolution that includes a call for a ceasefire in all conflicts in the world.

As a permanent member of the Security Council, Russia’s veto of a resolution with such call for a broad ceasefire will put the resolution in its grave.

The blame game politics is even more toxic. Amb. Jun, China’s U.N. envoy, said last month that this “public health” situation did not fall within the Security Council’s “geopolitical” ambit. To the Chinese, the COVID-19 pandemic has nothing to do with global security that it should be a subject of a Security Council resolution; to make it otherwise would be to insinuate that China produced the virus as a biological weapon. The USA, which currently has the highest number of diagnosed COVID-19 cases in the world, on its part has demanded that any Security Council resolution must mention the origin of the virus, which is Wuhan in China, as well as of the 2003 SARS epidemic.

Chinese President Xi Jingpin (centre) in anti-coronavirus protective mask

The Chinese lambasted the United States for “politicizing the outbreak and blaming China” in an email to U.N. missions, declaring: “The groundless accusations and malicious fabrication from the U.S. aim at shirking its own responsibilities, which severely poisoned the atmosphere of global cooperation in containing the outbreak.”

With China, the USA, and Russia each standing their grounds for different geopolitical and national interest reasons, the Guterres’ global ceasefire resolution is in limbo. France, however, has not given up on pushing for possible adoption even as the Security Council has transitioned to virtual video meetings with the Dominican Republic holding the Presidency for this month of April 2020.