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At G20 Virtual Summit, Xi and Putin Address Life-and-Death Nature of ‘All-Out War’ against Coronavirus Pandemic

March 27 (EIRNS)—At yesterday’s video summit of members of the Group of 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping commented incisively on the threat of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and proposed specific measures to strengthen what Xi Jinping called “an all-out global war” against the virus. There can be no “every-man-for-himself” mentality, Putin stressed. “This is a matter of life and death.”

In his presentation, Putin emphasized the urgent need to ensure “access to funding for countries which require resources, primarily meaning states that are affected by these crisis phenomena and the pandemic.” In light of this, he said, he suggested creating a special fund under International Monetary Fund auspices “financed primarily by the central banks that issue currencies included in the IMF basket.” Any IMF member could borrow from the fund, “proportionally to their share in the global economy with a zero interest rate for the long term.”

The Russian President said that in addition to ensuring functioning supply chains, it is equally important to create “so-called green corridors free of trade wars and sanctions for the mutual supply of medicines, food, equipment, and technology.” Ideally, there should also be a joint moratorium “on restrictions on essentials, as well as on financial transactions for their procurement.” He emphasized that he was talking about countries “that are suffering the most from this pandemic.”

In his presentation, Xi Jinping underscored the need for international cooperation “so that humanity as one could win the battle against such a major infectious disease.” He made four proposals to achieve this:

1. Be “resolute in fighting an all-out global war” against the pandemic. The community of nations “must move swiftly” to stem the virus’s spread. G20 health ministers should meet as soon as possible, and G20 members must jointly help those developing countries with weak public health systems.

2. There must be a collective response for control and treatment at the international level, since viruses respect no borders; we must all work together to build “a strongest global network of control and treatment that the world has ever seen.”

3. Support for international organizations is essential. Xi called on G20 members to “enhance anti-epidemic information, sharing with the support of the WHO, and promote control and treatment protocols.

4. Enhance international macroeconomic policy coordination; the outbreak has disrupted production and demand internationally.

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