The P5 and the SDGs at the 75º UNGA session

By Patti Londoño Jaramillo
Cepei
p.londono@cepei.org

October 16, 2020


The healer, the pragmatic, the accuser, the rhetorical preacher, the visionary. Views and attitudes reflected in the P5  (United Nations Security Council) permanent members statements. With one exception, China, the other 4 omitted to mention the SDGs. Curious to notice when actually the full implementation of the SDGs and the 2030 Agenda could actually enable the whole international system to react better to pandemics such as the current COVID-19.  

Countries have reacted in a rather counterproductive way to this pandemic. Instead of isolation we need to embrace our belonging to one and global international community. Instead of playing the blame and shame game we need to enhance our ability to cooperate and collaborate. Instead of selfishness we need to explore solidarity seeking a mutual benefit. Instead of narrow-minded visions we need to expand our universal understanding of our major global challenges. Instead of strengthening our national divisions we should commit to engaging with a global village. Instead of seeking our own well-being we need to seek global inclusive welfare. 

This pandemic has demonstrated that unless we are all healthy, no one will ever be. Do we need any other reason to cooperate? Lacking to mention the SDGs did not mean taking away the commitment to implement the 2030 Agenda. Its omission rather showed the way the UN and its members tend to compartmentalize all issues in the global agenda. We could make a more definite contribution to sustainable development, health and prosperity for humans and the planet if we started to see the interconnexions and linkages across broad agendas. 

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the perfect tool to promote and make real changes in the social, economic and environmental spheres of our bilateral and multilateral relations. They also deal with governance incorporating the political dimension needed to accelerate their implementation. Most global challenges should be dealt in a comprehensive and integrated manner and the SDGs pave a way forward to achieving more ambitious and universal goals and targets and sets the example of a common, coordinated, collaborative, and forward-looking implementation of one uniting purpose, which is no other than achieving full quality of life for humans in harmony with all other species and our Planet.  

In this context, the P5 members could go over their approach to the current pandemic, incorporating the SDGs in their strategies to set the example on how we, as one humanity, could overcome global challenges. 

.

About the author

Patti Londoño

Former Colombian diplomat and former Vice Chancellor. She is a political scientist from the Geneva University and the Geneva Graduate Institute of International Studies, with a master’s degree in international relations from the Stockholm University and a Ph.D. from Madrid´s Universidad UNED. Londoño was a professor and researcher in the Faculty of Finance and International Relations at Universidad Externado de Colombia. She has co-authored books on the United Nations and the Non-Aligned Movement, along with former Foreign Minister Luis Fernando Jaramillo. She has also published several academic papers on multilateral relations.