8 May 2020 13:38

Moscow backs global ceasefire amid Covid-19 pandemic, but it shouldn't apply to terrorists - Russian diplomat

MOSCOW. May 8 (Interfax) - Russia supports the call by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to declare a global ceasefire amid the coronavirus pandemic, but believes that it should not apply to the fight against terrorism, Russian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzya said in an interview with Interfax.

"We feel positive about the UN Secretary General's call for a global ceasefire amid the coronavirus pandemic and support its inclusion in Security Council documents. However, the ceasefire cannot apply to the antiterrorist efforts of the international community," Nebenzya said.

Such efforts "should be stepped up, considering that the terrorist international will not miss the chance to sow chaos in countries spending their resources, which are limited in many cases, on fighting the pandemic," he said.

In Russia's opinion, equally important is the UN Secretary General's call for lifting sanctions which undermine national capacities for fighting the pandemic, Nebenzya said. "We're ready to discuss a revision of the existing Security Council sanctions and immediately consider additional humanitarian exemptions at the Sanctions Committees of the UN Security Council," he said.

Guterres called for a global ceasefire on March 23. French President Emmanuel Macron said he had secured support from other permanent members of the UN Security Council and was also counting on support from Russian President Vladimir Putin.