South Korea, 10 other countries launch pandemic cooperation group

Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha speaks during a session of an anti-pandemic cooperation group, which was established at Unesco. Photo: Yonhap via Bernama

SEOUL: South Korea and 10 other countries launched a group at the United Nation Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) on Tuesday to promote cooperation against discrimination and other social challenges stemming from the new coronavirus, the foreign ministry said.

Seoul led the effort to establish the Group of Friends for Solidarity and Inclusion with Global Citizenship Education (GCED) after the launch of similar groups at the United Nations on May 12 and the World Health Organisation last Wednesday, Yonhap News Agency (Yonhap) reported.

It said the launch came as Seoul has been striving to share with the world its know-how and experience in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic on the back of growing global recognition for its containment strategy.

Founding members of the Unesco group held a videoconference to discuss joint efforts to address hatred against foreigners and other problems that have arisen during coronavirus outbreaks.

The inaugural member states are South Korea, Armenia, Austria, Bangladesh, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Serbia and Senegal, it added.

“Our Group of Friends will serve as a platform for solidarity and inclusion to meet the challenges of Covid-19 and beyond,” the group said in a joint statement adopted in the videoconference.

“The Group of Friends will focus on raising a strong voice against hate, discrimination and stigmatisation in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic, and promote GCED for international cooperation in the post-pandemic world,” it added. – Bernama