Fiery talk can lead to fatal misunderstandings: UN Chief

ANI | Updated: Sep 20, 2017 12:29 IST

New York [USA], Sept 20 (ANI): United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned that global anxieties about nuclear weapons are at the highest level since the end of the Cold War due to nuclear and missile tests by North Korea.

Speaking at his first General Assembly gathering on Tuesday, Guterres warned that "Fiery talk can lead to fatal misunderstandings". "The solution must be political - this is a time for statesmanship - we must not sleepwalk our way into war."

"Today proliferation is creating unimaginable danger, and disarmament is paralyzed," Guterres said in New York.

"Millions of people live under a shadow of dread cast by the provocative nuclear and missile tests of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea," the secretary-general said, referring to North Korea by its formal name. "I condemn those tests unequivocally."

Guterres commended the unity of the U.N. Security Council in its recent tightening and imposing of economic sanctions on Pyongyang, saying the move sends "a clear message" to the leadership there.

Calling for intensifying the global efforts against terrorism and radicalisation, the Secretary-General said that "It is not enough to fight terrorists on the battlefield," he said.

"The radicalization is the root cause of terrorism and we need to address the roots of radicalization, he added.

Stressing the need for "a surge in diplomacy today" and "a leap in conflict prevention for tomorrow," he said that it is possible to move from war to peace, and from dictatorship to democracy.

"Only political solutions can bring peace to the unresolved conflicts in Syria, Yemen, South Sudan, the Sahel, Afghanistan and elsewhere. That was why he announced the creation of a high-level advisory board on mediation," he added.

To tackle the challenges of nuclear peril, climate change, and ongoing conflicts, he said, the UN has launched initiatives to reform itself. Looking over the packed General Assembly Hall, he said that the UN is needed, and "multilateralism is more important than ever" when there are competing interests and even open conflict.

"We call ourselves the international community; we must act as one," he concluded.(ANI)