By Jim Fair
Pope Francis has offered his support for this week’s call by the United Nations for a general ceasefire to allow humanitarian relief in combat zones hit by the Covid-19 virus.
The Holy Father’s statement of support came after he prayed the noonday Angelus on July 5, 2020, with pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square.
“This week the United Nations Security Council adopted a Resolution which proposes some measures to deal with the devastating consequences of the Covid-19 virus, particularly for areas in conflict zones,” Pope Francis said. “The request for a global and immediate ceasefire, which would allow that peace and security necessary to provide the needed humanitarian assistance is commendable. I hope that this decision will be implemented effectively and promptly for the good of the many people who are suffering. May this Security Council Resolution become a courageous first step towards a peaceful future.”
On July 1, members of the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution demanding “a general and immediate cessation of hostilities in all situations on its agenda.” The resolution calls on parties to armed conflicts to immediately in a “durable humanitarian phase” provide aid to countries to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Vatican News.
In the resolution, the Council also voiced support for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who first proposed a global ceasefire on 23 March. That appeal has been echoed by world leaders, including Pope Francis, who, at the Angelus on 29 March invited everyone “to follow it up by ceasing all forms of hostilities, encouraging the creation of corridors for humanitarian aid, openness to diplomacy, and attention to those who find themselves in situations of vulnerability.”
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