WHO Director General’s Remarks to World Leaders on COVID-19
Only a few hours after the Director spoke, a new milestone of more than 525,000 people tested positive for the Coronvirous COVID-19. This is an opponent we will only beat if we unite as a team.
The Coronavirus COVID-19 has shown us all our interconnectedness and vulnerabilities. The virus does not respect borders, race, religion, gender or what you have in the bank.
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), addressed Heads of State at today’s extraordinary G20 Leaders’ Summit focused on COVID-19 earlier today.
Dr. Tedros told them, “You have come together to confront the defining health crisis of our time: We are at war with a virus that threatens to tear us apart – if we let it.”
“We come together to confront the defining health crisis of our time. We are at war with a virus that threatens to tear us apart – if we let it,” said Dr. Tedros. “Almost half a million people have already been infected, and more than 20,000 have lost their lives.”
THE OLYMPIC GAMES HAVE NEVER BEEN POSTPONED BEFORE
“We value the efforts to safeguard our people’s health through the postponement of major public events, in particular the decision by the International Olympic Committee to reschedule the Olympic Games to a date no later than summer 2021. We commend Japan’s determination to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 in their complete form as a symbol of human resilience,” added Dr. Tedros.
Milestones on the Coronavirus COVID-19
- The first 100 thousand cases took 67 days.
- The second 100 thousand took 11 days.
- The third 100 thousand took just 4 days.
- The fourth 100 thousand just 2 days.
“The actions we take now will have consequences for decades to come,” said Dr. Tedros. “COVID-19 is taking so much from us. But it is also giving us something: the opportunity to come together as one against a common threat, and to build a common future.”
“Without aggressive action in all countries, millions could die. The pandemic is accelerating at an exponential rate.”Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO)
He welcomed the G20‘s initiative to find joint solutions and work together: “This is a global crisis that requires a global response.”
“Fight, unite, ignite“
Dr Tedros’ call was clear. First, he urged leaders to fight without excuses, without regrets – thanking countries who have already taken steps and urgently asking that they do more.
Second, he encouraged them to unite, stressing that no country can fight this alone, and calling on all countries to build on the solidarity already sparked by the crisis.
Third, he exhorted them to ignite a global movement to ensure this never happens again.
Looking for a commitment to do whatever it takes to overcome the pandemic” to protect lives and livelihoods, the WHO’s focus is to contain the pandemic and protect people, especially the most vulnerable.
G20 members pledged to work together.
Their efforts are directed to increase research and development funding for vaccines and medicines, strengthen international scientific cooperation, and leverage digital technologies.
We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life and the suffering faced by people around the world. Tackling the pandemic and its intertwined health, social and economic impacts is our absolute priority. We express our gratitude and support to all frontline health workers as we continue to fight the pandemic.
The G20 is committed to do whatever it takes to overcome the pandemic, along with the World Health Organization (WHO), International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank Group (WBG), United Nations (UN), and other international organizations, working within their existing mandates.
WHO and FIFA Work Together to Battle COVID-19
Less than 6 months ago, WHO and FIFA signed an agreement to work together to promote health through football.
“We didn’t know then what we know now – that a new virus would emerge that would bring many parts of society to a standstill – including the beautiful game,” said Dr. Tedros earlier this week during the COVID-19 media briefing on March 23, 2020.
“Many football matches have stopped – but our collaboration has become even more important during these difficult times,” remarked Dr. Tedros. “In fact, it’s given us the opportunity of working together more closely than we imagined.”
“Football can reach millions of people, especially younger people, that public health officials cannot,” said Dr. Tedros before introducing Gianni Infantino, President of FIFA, to talk about our joint campaign to “Pass the message to kick out coronavirus”.
Source: WHO Press Release