22 Apr, 2020
Covid-19 hasn’t united the world. On the contrary, it has gravely increased the risk of largescale conflicts, with major players trying to use the crisis to strengthen their hands, Russia’s deputy foreign minister has said.
The struggle for international dominance was sharply intensifying even before the pandemic began, Sergey Ryabkov believes, but “unfortunately, the coronavirus couldn’t defuse this process, on the contrary, it only amplified and accelerated it.”
Ryabkov delivered a report on the future of Russian foreign policy at TASS news agency’s HQ in Moscow.
The divisions that may result in major – potentially global – international conflicts, splits between leading powers, are deepening. The threat of a nuclear war has not been eliminated.
With key arms treaties being abandoned and the influence of international bodies like the UN declining, “military force is playing an increasingly important role in international relations,” the deputy FM acknowledged. Top players must work together to come up with a diplomatic response to this challenge if they want to avoid the worst-case scenario, he added.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus in December in China’s Wuhan, the highly contagious disease has spread around the globe, causing more than 175,000 deaths, grinding the world’s major economies to a halt and wreaking havoc on the financial markets.