The United Nations General Assembly has unanimously adopted a resolution, co-sponsored by 188 nations including India, on COVID-19, calling for intensified international cooperation to defeat the pandemic that is causing “severe disruption to societies and economies.”

The resolution titled ‘Global solidarity to fight the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)’ was the first such document on the global pandemic to be adopted by the world organisation.

The UN Security Council is yet to discuss the coronavirus outbreak, even as the total number of coronavirus cases across the world crossed one million.

The resolution said the 193-member General Assembly notes “with great concern” the threat to human health, safety and well-being caused by the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, which continues to spread globally.

It recognises the “unprecedented effects of the pandemic, including the severe disruption to societies and economies, as well as to global travel and commerce, and the devastating impact on the livelihood of people.”

The resolution called for “intensified international cooperation to contain, mitigate and defeat the pandemic, including by exchanging information, scientific knowledge and best practices and by applying the relevant guidelines recommended by the World Health Organization.”

Recognising that the COVID-19 pandemic requires a global response based on unity, solidarity and renewed multilateral cooperation, the resolution said the General Assembly “reaffirms its commitment to international cooperation and multilateralism and its strong support for the central role of the United Nations system in the global response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.”

It also emphasised the need for full respect for human rights, and stressed that there is “no place for any form of discrimination, racism and xenophobia in the response to the pandemic.”

The resolution was sponsored by Ghana, Indonesia, Liechtenstein, Norway, Singapore and Switzerland.

Since the General Assembly is not holding meetings due to the pandemic, the resolution was adopted under a silence procedure.

The draft resolution was under silence procedure until April 2 at 6pm. If there were no objections to the resolution within the specified time period from member states, the President of the General Assembly circulates a letter confirming adoption.

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