War in Ukraine Is Widening as World Watches

War in Ukraine Is Widening as World Watches
War in Ukraine Is Widening as World Watches

As the war in Ukraine nears one-year old, the head of the United Nations said he fears it may be expanding into a wider conflict as the world looks on, UPI reported on Tuesday.

UN Attorney-General Antonio Guterres issued his warning Monday during a briefing in New York City on the General Assembly's priorities for the year, stating the prospects for peace in the conflict continue to diminish as the chances of further escalation and carnage grow.

"I fear the world is not sleepwalking into a wider war. I fear it is doing so with its eyes wide open," he said.

Guterres pointed to the Doomsday Clock, whose hands late last month were moved to 90 seconds to midnight, a metaphorical indicator of how close humanity is to nuclear annihilation. It is the closest it has ever been to midnight and was moved to reflect tensions caused by Russia's Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine.

"In truth, the Doomsday Clock is a global alarm clock," Guterres said. "We need to wake up -- and get to work."

He said the world needs peace in line with the UN Charter and international law, stating there are several other issues that hinder such prospects, including the conflict between Israel and Palestinians, the junta leadership of Myanmar, ongoing violence in the Sahel and Haiti and rights being stripped from women in Afghanistan where there have also been a series of deadly terrorist attacks.

"We have started 2023 staring down the barrel of a confluence of challenges," he said. "Wars grind on. The climate crisis burns on. Extreme wealth and extreme poverty rage on. The gulf between the haves and have-nots is cleaving societies, countries and our wider world.

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