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24 February 2021, 15:03

Lavrov: West uses pandemic to pressure ‘undesirable' governments

MINSK, 24 February (BelTA) – Some Western countries continue to ignore the fact that unlawful restrictions have a devastating impact on human rights implementation and try to take advantage of the pandemic to punish “undesirable” governments, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov said as he spoke at the high-level segment of the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council on 24 February, TASS reports.

“Western capitals persistently ignore the fact that unlawful restrictions have a devastating impact on human rights implementation. We see this not only as the politicization of humanitarian issues, but also as the desire to take advantage of the pandemic to punish “undesirable” governments,” Sergey Lavrov said.

The minister expressed regret that despite the pandemic and the apparent need to consolidate the efforts, some of the Western counterparts refuse to reconsider their selfish ways and abandon their coercive approaches and unlawful methods of intimidation and pressure. “The calls of the UN Secretary General and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to suspend unilateral sanctions on supplies of food, medicines and equipment needed to combat the virus, as well as on related financial transactions, have gone unheeded. Let me recall President Putin's initiative on opening green corridors (free of sanctions and other artificial barriers) in international trade,” he added.

According to Sergey Lavrov, the world economic downturn caused by the pandemic has led to a significant rise in unemployment and increased social insecurity. “There is a widening development gap between certain nations and regions. There is also growing inequality within certain countries, including those of the so-called golden billion. These are the issues that we must focus on today and jointly search for ways of resolving them, while utilizing the potential of the UN Human Rights Council,” the Russian minister stressed.

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