UN Boss unhappy with escalating tensions in middle east

Antonio Guterres
Antonio Guterres

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday expressed his grave concern about the ongoing hostilities between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

“As the hostilities between Israel and Hamas and other groups in Gaza intensify,” said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for Guterres, “the secretary-general remains gravely concerned about the further spillover of this conflict, which could have devastating consequences for the entire region.” The UN chief emphasized the increasing risk of a wider regional conflagration, cautioning that the longer the conflict in Gaza continues, the greater the chance of escalation and miscalculation by multiple actors. The escalating violence in the occupied West Bank, including intensified Israeli security forces operations, high numbers of fatalities, settler violence, and attacks on Israelis by Palestinians, was described as “extremely alarming.” “The daily exchanges of fire across the Blue Line risk triggering a broader escalation between Israel and Lebanon and affecting regional stability,” warned Guterres.

Furthermore, the secretary-general expressed growing concern about the spillover effects of continuing attacks by armed groups in Iraq and Syria, as well as Houthi attacks against vessels in the Red Sea, which have escalated in recent days. In response to these concerning developments, Guterres urged all parties involved to exercise maximum restraint and take urgent steps to de-escalate tensions in the region. He also called upon the international community to utilize their influence to prevent a further escalation of the situation. “The secretary-general reiterates his call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza and the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages,” Dujarric said.

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