In an alarming assessment, the head of the United Nations has warned world leaders that countries are “stuck in a state of colossal global dysfunction” and are not ready or willing to deal with the challenges that threaten the future of humanity.
“Our world is in danger – and crippled,” he said on Tuesday.
The 77th meeting of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) of world leaders convened in the shadow of Russia’s war in Ukraine, which triggered a global food crisis and ushered in rifts between the great powers in a way not seen since the Cold War.
Addressing the opening of the annual high-level meeting in New York City, Secretary General Antonio Guterres began his remarks with a hopeful note.
He showed a photo of the first ship chartered by the United Nations to carry grain from Ukraine – part of the Ukraine-Russia deal that the UN and Turkey helped broker – to the Horn of Africa, where millions of people are on the brink of starvation. It was an example of promise and hope “in a world full of chaos,” he said.
He stressed that cooperation and dialogue are the only way to maintain global peace – two fundamental principles of the United Nations since its founding after World War II. And he warned that “no single force or group can execute the shots”.
“Let’s work as one, as a union of the world, as united nations,” he urged leaders gathered in the vast hall of the General Assembly.
“The divide between developed and developing countries, between North and South, between privilege and the rest, is becoming more and more dangerous,” the secretary-general said.
“It is at the root of geopolitical tensions and a lack of trust that has poisoned every area of global cooperation, from vaccines to sanctions to trade.”
Call for an end to the Russian-Ukrainian war
At the top of the agenda for many is Russia’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine, which not only threatens the smaller neighbor’s sovereignty but also raises fears of a nuclear disaster. at Europe’s largest nuclear plant in the southeast of the country currently occupied by Russia.
The loss of vital grain and fertilizer exports from Ukraine and Russia has caused a food crisis, especially in the developing world, and high inflation and the cost of living in many other countries. .
King Abdullah II of Jordan said the pandemic, aggravated by the crisis in Ukraine, has disrupted global supply chains and increased hunger. Many affluent countries experiencing empty food shelves for the first time “are discovering a truth that people in developing countries have known for a long time – for nations to thrive, food can reach the dinner table of every family,” he said.
“On a global level, this requires collective measures to ensure equitable access to affordable food and speed up the transportation of staples to countries in need.” Abdullah said.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on world leaders at the United Nations headquarters on the need for a peaceful resolution of the war in Ukraine, stopping offering any tangible steps.
That may not necessarily reflect Turkey’s shortcomings, as it is the reality of where we are at, where no agency or country can find them, said Al Jazeera. take practical steps to end this war,” said Al Jazeera reporter Jamal Elshayyal.
“That said, it is possible that Ankara’s position is far more promising than others in that it has succeeded in finding common ground for some of the effects of this war, especially in regards to security. Food security and the global grain supply chain and the big stuff is coming out of there,” he added.
“Ultimately, Erdogan’s main message to the delegates was one of seeking support for his country’s conflict resolution efforts.”
The ‘fake’ referendum plan
The meeting came as officials in four Russian-controlled regions in eastern and southern Ukraine said they would hold referendums on becoming part of Russia September 23 to 27 could set the stage for Moscow to escalate the war.
NATO Director Jens Stoltenberg calls referendum plan a “fake”.
“Such referendums have no legitimacy because they are fake referendums,” he told Al Jazeera.
“They will not change the nature of the war. This is still a war of aggression against Ukraine and it represents an escalation because if suddenly these territories, which are part of Ukraine, are declared part of Russia, then the conflict will only intensify. more escalation”.
Meanwhile, French President Emmanuel Macron delivered a fiery speech to parliament, saying that no country can stay on the sidelines in the face of Russian aggression.
He accused the silencers of being “complicit in a new cause of imperialism” that is trampling on the existing world order and making peace impossible.