KUALA LUMPUR: With the growing frequency of global health threats including the Covid-19 pandemic, the world must come together as a family and engage in more effective health diplomacy, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob(pix).

He said this in his inaugural speech at the General Debate of the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York today, via a pre-recorded video. The text of his speech was made available to the media here by the Malaysian Foreign Ministry (Wisma Putra).

“Our common mission in these unprecedented times call us to recognise that humankind is one big extended family. We must ensure greater collaboration not just to end this pandemic but on an array of other health-related issues.

“It is in that spirit that we in Malaysia have very consciously referred to ourselves as ‘Keluarga Malaysia’,” he said.

Ismail Sabri said Malaysia is fully committed in managing, overcoming and recovering from the deadly Covid-19 pandemic.

“We will ensure that Malaysia will not only bounce back but will thrive as the world emerges from the depths of the pandemic,” he said.

He pointed out despite of the unified commitment, with the aggressive rollout of vaccines, and with the sharing and adoption of best practices, sadly the reality today is that the world is far from winning the war against Covid-19.

While most vaccine producing nations as well as those that have the financial means have achieved some measure of success, the majority of the world’s population, mainly from middle income and least developed countries, remain unvaccinated.

However, the focus should not just be on vaccines as there were other aspects that required attention as well, he said.

Ismail Sabri said public health should be regarded as a global public good rather than the exclusive domain of individual nations.

Hence, Malaysia will play a more prominent role and participate more actively in health diplomacy with inter-disciplinary approach involving more relevant stakeholders. -Bernama