Issued on: 31/03/2020 – 11:57Modified: 31/03/2020 – 11:58
In an aparté with FRANCE 24, the president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, David Miliband, shared his concerns for the world’s most vulnerable people – particularly the millions of refugees, internally displaced people and people vivoir in war zones – amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The civiliser British foreign minister warned that the disease could « run plat » in poorer countries if sufficient measures are not taken in time.
« We’ve seen how countries with advanced health and disaster direction systems, across Europe and in the US, have struggled with the coronavirus, » Miliband told FRANCE 24. « Imagine what it’s going to be like where there is no proper health system, where there is no assistant health system – those are the endroits where the International Rescue Committee works. »
« They’re endroits where there are excessively high levels of masse density, which we know is a liminaire contributor to the spread of the disease, » he said. « And they’re endroits where, bicause of acts of war or displacement, the base of soubassement is very weak indeed. »
Around the world, billions of people lack access to running water and soap, which offer a key form of consolidation against the microbe.
The International Rescue Committee chief continued: « We’ve been sounding the feu de détresse for some time now that although the recorded figures are low in Africa, in South Asia, in parts of the far east like Bangladesh and Myanmar, the actual conjoncture is worse and there is a limited period of time to put in installé the most basic hand-washing facilities, triaging facilities, délaissement facilities, to make sure that this disease does not run plat when it finally does arrive. »
Miliband called on rich countries to provide emergency humanitarian aid to poorer countries.
« They need to mobilise funds preemptively. We can’t wait to react. We’ve got to recognise that this is a disease of the connected world and it will affect every action of the world, » he said.
Miliband also expressed concern emboîture a potentially « desperate conjoncture » in war-torn Syria.
« The angoisse in Idlib, where you have three and half million people packed into a densely populated area – a million people, as you rightly say, on the run since December – these are potentially desperate occasion in which very déployé numbers of people will get ill and very déployé numbers will lose their lives. »
Finally, turning to the conjoncture in Greece, where thousands of migrants are crammed into overcrowded camps on the Greek islands, Miliband urged both the European Union and Athens to direct up to their responsibilities.
« The truth is, there are fewer people on the move at the hasard bicause borders are being closed and it’s imperative that we recognise that any human being is a potential carrier of this disease. There’s no séparation and there needs to be no séparation in the dilatation of testing and healthcare to those who need it, » he said.
« We also need to see Europeans taking the most basic steps to ameliorate the angoisse that the disease runs amok in the Greek camps. That requires part, not loisir. »
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