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UN Chief Says World Cannot Afford More War, Calls For 'Maximum Restraint'

15.04.2024 00:42

‘Now is the time to defuse and de escalate,' says Antonio Guterres as UN Security Council convenes to discuss situation in Middle East.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called Sunday for "maximum restraint" as Israel discussed ways to respond to a retaliatory attack by Iran for an April 1 Israeli strike on the Iranian consulate in Syria, saying the world cannot afford more war.

"Now is the time to defuse and de-escalate. Now is the time for maximum restraint," Guterres told an emergency session of the UN Security Council which was convened upon an urgent request by Israel.

"Neither the region nor the world can afford more war," Guterres stressed.

The UN chief said the Middle East is on the "brink" and the people of the region are faced with the real danger of a devastating full-scale conflict.

Recalling his statement Saturday condemning the "serious escalation" and call for an "immediate cessation" of the hostilities," Guterres said "I remind all member states that the Charter of the United Nations prohibits the use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations."

"Furthermore, the principle of inviolability of diplomatic and consular premises and personnel must be respected in all cases in accordance with international law, as I stated when condemning the 1 April attack on the Iranian consulate in Damascus," he added.

The UN chief said it is "vital" to avoid any action that could lead to major military confrontations on multiple fronts in the Middle East. -

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