The threat is the virus and not the people: UN


The United Nations has said that COVID-19 pandemic was more than a public health emergency and that a human crisis was fast becoming a human rights crisis.

Noting that human rights cannot be an afterthought in times of crisis, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said that the world was facing the biggest crisis in generations. He said this while releasing a report on the guidelines on human rights at times of COVID-19.

He mentioned that the message was clear that people and their rights must be given much importance. No one should be left out with respect to Human rights, he added. “Human rights responses can help beat the pandemic, putting a focus on the imperative of healthcare for everyone” the UN chief said.

Mentioning that the virus did not discriminate, Guterres said that everyone should be given equal access to everything. He said that certain communities faced issues related to Human Rights. Moreover, the rise of hate speech, targeting of vulnerable groups and risks of heavy-handed security responses undermining the health response should all be addressed, he said.

The UN Chief said that the governments must be transparent, responsive and accountable. Civic space and press freedom are also critical, he said. The Chief noted that civil society organizations and private sector had roles to play in the present crisis.

Stressing that the threat was the virus and not the people, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres pointed out that all emergency measures, including states of emergency, are taken for the benefit of the people. All these measures are taken to protect public health.

He said “by respecting human rights in this time of crisis, we will build more effective and inclusive solutions for the emergency of today and the recovery for tomorrow.”



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here