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Press Release

Statement by David Miliband as UN launches additional $7 billion COVID appeal: Global action needed now

As the United Nations increases its Humanitarian Response Plan to nearly $7 billion to counter the global public health and humanitarian consequences of COVID-19, David Miliband, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, said:

“The UN’s renewed funding appeal of $6.7 billion to continue fighting the common threat of the coronavirus sends a simple message: global action is needed now to avoid the pandemic running rampant in the weakest corners of the world. Last week, the International Rescue Committee issued a dire warning: that 1 billion people could be infected without immediate and context-appropriate action across fragile and crisis-affected countries. As Europe begins to reopen, caseloads continue to mount in places like Somalia, Yemen and Democratic Republic of Congo. This new appeal helps paint the picture of the scale of investment needed now. We have a small but critical window of time left to mount a robust and truly global response to this pandemic - completely dwarfed to date by the monumental severity of this threat. The key now is for donors to fully and rapidly fund frontline efforts -like the IRC’s- already positioned to scale up and serve the most vulnerable. Unless the world gets its act together in the next few weeks, not only will the most vulnerable pay the price today for its inaction, the consequences will be felt across the globe for years, if not decades, to come.”

About the IRC

The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises, helping to restore health, safety, education, economic wellbeing, and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster. Founded in 1933 at the call of Albert Einstein, the IRC is at work in over 40 countries and 29 U.S. cities helping people to survive, reclaim control of their future and strengthen their communities. Learn more at www.rescue-uk.org and follow the IRC on Twitter & Facebook.