Sergiy Kyslytsya, the Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the United Nations, has commented on the UN decision to introduce restrictive measures due to the global spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
He commended the UN efforts to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
“Ukraine welcomes the measures the UN announced today in order to minimize the risks of spreading of the COVID-19 virus. In particular, this concerns the decision to cancel meetings involving representatives from capital cities. We also support the UN Secretary-General’s efforts aimed in particular at organizing the remote work of Secretariat employees,” the Ambassador said in a commentary for LB.ua.
Kyslytsya described the spread of coronavirus as an unprecedented challenge.
“We are facing an unprecedented challenge. All possible measures should be taken, but without panic. We must be guided by a scientific approach and common sense,” he said.
He noted that coronavirus also drew attention to the long-standing problems of the UN.
“I want to draw attention to the fact that the fight against coronavirus is not only a problem whose gravity nobody calls into question. It is also an opportunity. A unique opportunity to change the outdated ways of working, which the UN could not get rid of for decades because of bloated bureaucracy and political sabotage by some states. Above all, I mean the use of modern information technology, simplification and reduction of paperwork and the number of meetings, and the introduction of a remote form of work on a permanent basis. In particular, this will ease the burden on the UN regular budget which has recently been underfinanced anyway," Kyslytsya said.
“By a cruel irony, this misfortune should be a lesson for us. Coronavirus is especially dangerous for older people. Our organization turns 75 this year. As with the case of COVID-19, after this crisis is over, the UN must develop immunity to the rudiments of the past. Therefore, this challenge should not be a verdict, but a vaccine and an opportunity to get rid of bad habits," the diplomat added.