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UN chief calls for more efforts to address global fragilities exposed by COVID-19

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 09:00, September 17, 2020

UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 16 (Xinhua) -- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday called for more efforts to address the global fragilities that the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed.

"We must do far more to address the global fragilities that the virus has exposed," the UN chief told journalists at a hybrid press conference held at the UN headquarters in New York.

"Even before the pandemic, the world was veering far off course in efforts to eradicate poverty, achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, and we were losing the battle against climate change," he said, noting that greenhouse gas concentrations reached new record highs in 2020.

"The Northern Hemisphere has just experienced its hottest summer on record," he said.

"The world is burning, and recovery is our chance to get on track and tame the flames," the secretary-general stressed.

Talking about recovery, the UN chief said that it must be aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

"Recovery must be green. Subsidizing fossil fuels and bailing out polluting industries means locking in bad patterns for decades to come," he added.

The secretary-general also underscored that recovery must advance gender equality and requires effective multilateralism as well.

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