Swiss parliament calls for global ceasefire to fight coronavirus 

Coronavirus could have a devastating effect in war torn countries like Yemen, where the population is already suffering. Keystone

Switzerland’s House of Representatives has called for warring parties around the world to lay down their arms in the face of the coronavirus crisis.  

This content was published on May 6, 2020 - 13:30

War and armed conflict make it even more difficult to protect people from the coronavirus and its consequences, according to the declaration adopted on Wednesday by 129 votes to 44 with 4 abstentions. 

This follows a similar call on March 23 by United Nations Secretary General Antonio GuterresExternal link, who urged an end to conflict to fight the “common enemy” of Covid 19.  

A ceasefire is absolutely necessary for the fight against the pandemic, foreign affairs committee spokesman Fabian Molina told the extraordinary parliamentary session. 

Given the consequences of the coronavirus crisis on medical care in wealthy countries, one can only imagine what this would look like in countries in conflict and crisis, said Social Democrat Brigitte Crottaz. 

Only the right-wing Swiss People’s Party voted against the declaration, fearing that it would imply "distributing even more money that we urgently need in Switzerland", according to Roland Büchel. 

"We are aware that the weapons will probably not be silent immediately," admitted Roland Fischer of the centrist Liberal Green party. But he said it was an important sign of solidarity, a sign to the UN and the international community that everyone is in the same boat and that the virus can only be fought together worldwide.  

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