JOHANNESBURG (AP) — African nations came out swinging on the third day of the United Nations annual gathering of world leaders Thursday, calling for dramatic fiscal measures to help economies survive the coronavirus pandemic — which one leader called the “fifth horseman of the apocalypse.”
Africa’s 54 countries estimate they need $100 billion in support annually for the next three years, pointing out that it’s a fraction of the trillions of dollars some richer countries are using to revive their economies.
As some world powers go their own way during the crisis — what Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa called “the blind pursuit of narrow interests” — the African nations that make up more than a quarter of U.N. members are leaning hard into multilateralism.
Reminding fellow leaders of what brought the U.N. to life 75 years ago, President Teodoro Obiang of Equatorial Guinea said the victors of World War II “had conflicting interests but were able for a moment to unite and were able to place the salvation of the world above their own interests.”
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