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Intervention of the Permanent Representative of Italy to the 71st session of the Executive Committee of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees.

The Permanent Representative of Italy to the UN and other International Organizations in Geneva, Ambassador Gian Lorenzo Cornado, delivered his statement to the Executive Committee of UNHCR, at the presence of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Mr. Filippo Grandi.

Ambassador Cornado highlighted the unimaginable challenges that we are confronted today with because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a health emergency rapidly turned into a major global crisis with a huge socio-economic impact, the conditions of the most vulnerable populations. He reminded that “the virus knows no borders” and appealed for mutual help and cooperation, trusting that “multilateralism is the only solution for an effective global response, in order to achieve true solidarity and to start rebuilding on more solid foundations”.

Ambassador Cornado reminded also that despite Italy has been, since the beginning, at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic, it continued mobilizing financial resources and addressing emergency response and humanitarian needs, providing support to UNHCR. In addition, he confirmed the Italian engagement of implementing the commitments arising from the first Global Refugee Forum, in close partnership with UNHCR, resuming part of our resettlement programs and continuing offering humanitarian corridors for the safe transfer to Italy of particularly vulnerable refugees. Lastly, he announced the launch of the new edition of the « University Corridors for Refugees Project » benefiting refugee students from Middle East and African countries who will have a chance to complete or have access to university education in Italy.

Read here the full statement