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UN Secretary General’s remarks on Middle East situation


New York, 16 April 2024 (TDI): The Middle East violence could come face to face with a ruinous full-scale conflict, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reported in a statement on Sunday at the UN Security Council.

He calls for “maximum restraint” throughout the Middle East, which is “on the brink.”

The statement came after Iran carried out retaliatory drone attacks against Israel on Saturday.

The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres reported to delegates at the opening of an emergency meeting of the UNSC that, “It is vital to avoid any action that could lead to major military confrontations on multiple fronts in the Middle East.” He further reported that “now is the time to defuse and de-escalate.”

Late Saturday, Iran launched a direct attack on Israel, carrying out over 300 missiles and drones. Almost all of them were intercepted by Israel, the US, the UK, and Jordan. The Israeli army reports that 12 people were injured.

Iran maintains that the attack was a result of retaliation against the April 1st strike on Tehran’s consulate building in Damascus, the Syrian capital.

In this attack, seven Iranian Revolutionary Guards, including two senior generals were killed.

This unforeseen exchange between Iran and Israel has led to resumed fears of a wider conflict, also encompassing a response in the form of a counterstrike from Israel.

Global reaction

The United States has asserted that it would not be assisting Israel in a counterattack on Iran. President Joe Biden has reported that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must “think carefully” about the possibility of any intensification.

Iran’s UN envoy Amir Saeid Iravani reported that, the Islamic Republic was carrying out its “inherent right to self-defense,” also reporting that, “The Security Council…failed in its duty to maintain international peace and security.”

Iran’s UN envoy Amir Saeid reports that Iran does “not seek escalation or war…however, it would respond to threat or aggression.”

In addition to this, the EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell reported, “We’re on the edge of the cliff and we have to move away from it…we have to step on the brakes and reverse gear.”

Moreover, in Russia, which is an ally of Iran, Russian spokesman Dmitry Peskov reported, “We are extremely concerned about the escalation of tensions in the region…we call on all countries in the region to exercise restraint.”

Also Read: Russia condemns Israeli strike on Iranian Consulate in Syria

The UN Secretary General in his statement reported that the civilians are experiencing the aftermath of the conflict and are suffering from its consequences.

He further reported, “We have a shared responsibility to stop violence in the occupied West Bank, de-escalate the situation along the Blue Line, and re-establish safe navigation in the Red Sea.”

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