The EU thanks the UN High Commissioner for presenting her report on the central role of the State in responding to pandemics and other health emergencies.
COVID-19 not only impacts the enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights, but also of civil and political rights. Sustainable development is only possible if fundamental human rights principles such as non-discrimination, participation, and the rule of law are respected. Good governance, inclusion, equality, transparency and accountability are vital for sustainable development. Effective governance institutions and systems that are responsive to public needs deliver essential services and promote inclusive growth, while inclusive political processes ensure that citizens can hold public officials to account at all levels.
In this context we would like to stress the need for government action to be necessary, proportionate and non-discriminatory, in accordance with international human rights law. We specifically invite all governments to strengthen and further expand universal social protection mechanisms. It is also important to including multilateral institutions, civil society and the private sector in all relevant processes. We agree with the emphasis put by the report on the strengthening of health systems and we would like to put the stress on multilateral initiative such as ACT-A, which has a pillar dedicated on strengthening health systems.
Madame High Commissioner,
in your report, you are stressing the importance of upholding of civil and political rights such as the rights to participate in public affairs, freedom of expression and freedom of association, and that the concrete steps will require renewed political will and leadership to honour the commitments made by States under human rights law and the 2030 Agenda.
Can you elaborate more in this context on what States and international community can do to improve the current situation?
I thank you.