UN call for peace fails to drown out Russia’s battle cry

PEACE talks between the UN secretary-general and Vladimir Putin in Russia broke down yesterday as Moscow warned that a third world war was now a serious possibility.

Antonio Guterres held candid talks with the president just hours after Kremlin Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned there was a ‘considerable’ possibility of the Ukraine conflict turning into nuclear weapons in the near future. global scale.

Lavrov accused NATO soldiers of “pouring oil on the fire” by arming kyiv, accusing them of engaging in a proxy conflict with Russia.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said, “Nobody wants a nuclear war, nobody can win it.”

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said Lavrov’s impassioned remarks were just an attempt to “dissuade the world from supporting Ukraine”.

And British Armed Forces Minister James Heappey stressed that NATO as an organization does not donate armaments to Ukraine.

He added: “Sergei Lavrov might also think that the reason why there is a war in Ukraine right now is that Russia has crossed the borders of a sovereign country and started invading its territory.

Earlier, Lavrov was asked about the need to avoid further bloodshed and whether the dispute amounted to the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, when the United States and the Soviet Union were on the brink of nuclear war.

He replied: “The risks now are considerable. The danger is serious, real. It should not be underestimated. Mr. Guterres urged Lavrov to agree to a ceasefire in Ukraine.

Stressing that he was in Moscow as a messenger of peace, the UN chief said he understood Russia had “many grievances”, but added that Russian troops were in Ukraine and not there. ‘reverse.

He said: “The sooner peace is established, the better – for the good of Ukraine, Russia and the world,” he told a press conference in Moscow.

Lavrov claimed that Western interference in his neighbor was used to coerce, control and provoke Russia.

He also blamed the violence on the West’s “violation” of Russia’s “geopolitical space”, which he said diminished Moscow’s influence in Ukraine.

And Putin’s right-hand man reiterated the Kremlin’s illogical assertion that the citizens of Donbass should be freed from the “Nazis”.

Mr. Guterres’ conversations with Putin were then held in private a few hours later. Their contents have not been made available to the public. However, it is understood that the conversations focused not only on de-escalation and the possibility of a ceasefire, but also on the fate of beleaguered Mariupol.

Despite the declaration of victory, the Russian soldiers were unable to invade the huge steelworks where the civilians sheltered, and the local forces resisted.

Russia, according to the Ukrainian military, is still blocking the plant.

Ukraine has asked Mr. Guterres to ensure a humanitarian corridor to rescue residents who have taken refuge inside Azovstal.

According to Mr. Guterres, the organization is “ready to fully mobilize its human and logistical resources”.

He added that “thousands of civilians are in desperate need of life-saving humanitarian aid” in the port city where “large parts have been destroyed”.

Mr. Guterres also advocated working with the Red Cross to help those trapped in the Azovstal compound to flee.

The UN Secretary General is due to travel to Kyiv tomorrow and meet President Volodymyr Zelensky.

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