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UN envoy calls for ceasefire in Syria to tackle virus threat

UN envoy calls for ceasefire in Syria to tackle virus threat

The United Nations envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, called on Tuesday for a nationwide ceasefire to allow for a better response to the threat of the novel coronavirus. The government in Damascus has so far reported one case of Covid-19, but fears are high that the virus could spread rapidly among the war-battered country’s most vulnerable communities, AFP said.

“Syrians are acutely vulnerable to Covid-19. Healthcare facilities have been destroyed or are degraded,” Pedersen said. “There is a shortage of key medical equipment and health professionals.”

“To confront this danger, the long-suffering Syrian people desperately need a sustained period of calm throughout the country respected by all parties,” Pedersen said.

Aid groups have warned that Syria, where many people have been displaced, is particularly vulnerable.