United Nations chief Antonio Guterres has warned of “humanitarian disaster of epic proportions” because of the geopolitical distrust and competitors that has made nuclear danger escalate to Chilly Conflict ranges.
“Any use of a nuclear weapon – anytime, anyplace and in any context – would unleash a humanitarian disaster of epic proportions,” he informed the UN Basic Meeting on the ultimate day of its yearly session on Tuesday as North Korea warned that the US was pushing it to the brink of battle.
With an evolving nuclear order wherein armed nations are increasing and modernising their arsenals, the UN chief referred to as on nations to strengthen their commitments to lowering and, ultimately, eliminating nuclear weapons.
In a assertion launched on the Worldwide Day for the Complete Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, Guterres reminded UN member states of the lately launched coverage temporary on A New Agenda for Peace – which requires a recommitment to non-proliferation of nuclear weapons.
“On this essential Day, we re-affirm our dedication to a world freed from nuclear weapons and the humanitarian disaster their use would unleash,” Guterres mentioned within the assertion.
“This implies nuclear-weapon States main the way in which by assembly their disarmament obligations, and committing to by no means use nuclear weapons beneath any circumstances.”
North Korea on ‘brink of nuclear battle’
In the meantime, North Korea, in one of many final speeches of the week-long UN Basic Meeting debate, accused the US of driving the peninsula “nearer to the brink of nuclear battle” due to its tighter cooperation with South Korea.
Kim Music, North Korea’s ambassador to the United Nations, pointed to the current formation of the Nuclear Consultative Group, by which the US hopes to combine its nuclear capability higher with South Korea’s standard forces.
The 2 allies would improve info sharing and contingency planning, which Kim alleged was to execute a “preemptive nuclear strike” towards North Korea.
“As a consequence of its sycophantic and humiliating coverage of relying on exterior forces, the Korean peninsula is in a hair-trigger state of affairs with imminent hazard of nuclear battle,” Kim mentioned.
An envoy from South Korea took the ground to object to the remarks.
“Do you actually consider, because the DPRK pretends, the Republic of Korea along with the US conspires to impress a nuclear battle on the Korean peninsula with out causes that can trigger catastrophic casualties,” he requested.
Hours earlier, South Korea staged its first army parade in a decade, with some 4,000 troops marching by a wet Seoul.
Yoon Suk-yeol, South Korea’s president, had earlier mentioned that “if North Korea makes use of nuclear weapons, its regime will likely be dropped at an finish by an amazing response from the ROK-US alliance”.
Rising nuclear arms
In June this yr, the Stockholm Worldwide Peace Analysis Institute reported that the world’s nuclear powers, and China specifically, elevated funding of their arsenals for a 3rd consecutive yr in 2022.
Whereas the entire variety of nuclear warheads held by Britain, China, France, India, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia and the US had fallen by about 1.6 p.c to 12,512 over the earlier yr, SIPRI mentioned the declining development was on the cusp of a reversal.