NGOs: EU Solidarity in Response to Coronavirus Pandemic Insufficient

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, March 18, 2020 – The Forum 2020 platform, which brings together civil society groups, warned on Wednesday about the insufficient solidarity of EU countries amid the coronavirus pandemic, calling on Croatia, as the current EU chair, to convene the European Council to define a joint response to the current crisis.

Expressing concern about the first reactions to the strengthening of the epidemic on European territory, notably by EU member-countries, the platform said that they ignored the pandemic that could only be countered with international solidarity and not nationally.

Forum 2020 said messages which testify to insufficient solidarity with others who are affected undermine international solidarity which is necessary to stop the pandemic.

“This is especially evidenced by a high degree of caution regarding the distribution and production of medical equipment,” said the platform.

It noted that it supported EU institutions and member-states’ efforts made so far but that it was necessary to enhance activities taken so far and strengthen policies of international solidarity in order to overcome the crisis as soon as possible.

Forum 2020 asked Croatia as the current EU chair to call an extraordinary session of the European Council at which leaders would make decisions enabling the EU to do its best to protect its citizens from infection.

It proposes the allocation of additional funds for the public health system as well as that the European Council urge the private sector with high capital reserves to contribute with donations to public financial funds that are being set up to alleviate the negative socioeconomic consequences of the crisis.

It also believes that all available medical and protective equipment made in the EU should be gathered and that agreement should be reached that member-countries have the right to keep 90% of the equipment while 10% would be used for emergency interventions in European and global hot spots.

Forum 2020 also seeks from the EU financial support for the solidarity fund recently set up by the World Health Organisation, for the long-term strengthening of the civil protection system and for solidarity with refugees, as well as for solidarity with the global south and developing countries.

Without clear commitment to resolving the crisis through global partnership, the number of human lives lost will be much higher, the platform said.

More coronavirus news can be found in the Lifestyle section.


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