On 23 June, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) announced that its initiative for a temporary pause on all wars, successfully garnered the support of 171 countries
Earlier in March, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appealed for a global ceasefire, a temporary stoppage of all wars, during a virtual press conference broadcast on UN Web TV.
"I am calling for an immediate global ceasefire in all corners of the world. It is time to put armed conflict on lockdown and focus together on the true fight of our lives," he said.
The ceasefire, Guterres added, would enable humanitarian outreach for populations that are most vulnerable to the spread of COVID-19.
In a video uploaded to their social media accounts, the MFA cited Bangladesh, Ecuador, Egypt, Jamaica, Japan, Oman, Senegal, Slovenia, and Sweden as collaborators on the initiative, called ‘Statement of Support to the UN Secretary-General’s Appeal for a Global Ceasefire amid the COVID-19 Pandemic'.
Though not legally binding, the MFA cites the initiative as a bid for shared solidarity amid the pandemic
According to the MFA's press release, Malaysia led the initiative in order to send a unified and strong political message that reaffirms their support for the cessation of hostilities worldwide.
Although the Statement is not legally binding, meaning no country will be forced to take action, officials do believe that it emphasises Malaysia's commitment to global peace and security issues.
Recently, Malaysia had also undertaken a leadership role for the 2020 Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
Malaysian Representative to the UN Dato' Syed Md Hasrin Tengku Hussin led the Preparatory Committee, a body responsible for addressing any procedural issues related to the Treaty, which preceded the Review Conference.
The press release ended by saying that Malaysia will continue to actively participate and fulfil its role at the UN.
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