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Moushira Khattab: COVID-19 pandemic unveiled the gaps in the international human rights system

Ambassador Dr. Moushira Khattab, President of the National Council for Human Rights (NCHR), said that the entire world is suffering due to the outbreak of a severe pandemic, and that the world experienced a significant lack in international cooperation during the first wave of the pandemic. Subsequently, after it turned out that no one will overcome this crisis alone, and that international solidarity is the only way to retrieve the global balance, the world countries engaged in a cooperative approach of international solidarity where diplomacy played a major role in a comprehensive distribution and provision of vaccines.

That was part of her speech during the international conference organised by NCHR, in collaboration with the Arab Network for Human Rights National Institutions (ANNHRI), the National Human Rights Commission in Qatar, the Arab  League, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), on international solidarity and Sustainable Development Plan (Goal-16), which witnessed wide participation of ministers, local, regional and international active figures in human rights.

The NCHR President pointed out the major importance of sustainable development, which acquired an added importance in the post-pandemic phase. She added that in 2020, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) noted that achieving sustainable development in the Arab region faces structural barriers that are often shared among the 22 Arab countries, despite variations in income level, natural resources, and demographic profiles. Transformative change in the Arab region entails dismantling those barriers to unleash the existing potential of its people, and to meet the ambition of its commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
"Two years after this report was published, the pandemic has hit the world and everything changed as the world sought to adapt to the pandemic's repercussions which we know it won't be the last", said Ambassador Moushira Khattab.
She pointed out that this makes this meeting even more important, as the pandemic has unveiled significant gaps in the international human rights system, which requires strengthening international solidarity to create a better post-pandemic world.
The NCHR emphasized that the pandemic has added to the significant challenges faced by the Arab region in order to enforce human rights, which include the suffering of the Palestinian population, and climate challenges threatening the security and stability of communities.