A third operation is underway to evacuate civilians from the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol and the besieged Azovstal steel plant, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Thursday, as Russia accused the West of waging an economic World War.
The United Nations and International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have so far evacuated nearly 500 civilians during two previous operations in the past week. During a press briefing at the UN Security Council, Mr Guterres declined to give details on the new operation “to avoid undermining possible success.”
“I hope that the continued coordination with Moscow and Kyiv will lead to more humanitarian pauses to allow civilians safe passage from the fighting and aid to reach those in critical need,” he said. “We must continue to do all we can to get people out of these hellscapes,” he added.
UN plans third evacuation from Azovstal steelworks as battle continues to rage https://t.co/t8AnvXdp7R
— The Guardian (@guardian) May 6, 2022
Developing countries in trouble
Mr Guterres has also warned that the war in Ukraine was putting even more pressure on the developing world.
He told the Security Council he was ready to facilitate talks on “reintegrating Ukraine’s agricultural production and the food and fertilizer production of Russia and Belarus into world markets, despite the war.”
The number of people who have little to no access to sufficient food is growing at an alarming rate, new UN report warns.#COVID19, the climate crisis & conflict, including the war in Ukraine, are having devastating impacts on global food security. https://t.co/nmtVji0Q9O
— United Nations (@UN) May 4, 2022
Moscow targeted civilians in Kyiv
UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet told the Security Council that for about five weeks from late February in areas around Kyiv, “Russian forces targeted male civilians, who they considered suspicious.” Russia has denied attacking civilians.
“Men were detained, beaten, summarily executed and, in some cases, taken to Belarus and Russia, unbeknownst to their families, and held in pre-trial detention facilities,” she said.
Russia alone can end this war
US Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, accused Russia of lying to the Security Council.
“Russia alone started this war and Russia alone can end it. Silence the guns, withdraw from Ukrainian territory, and embrace diplomacy,” she said.
Moreover, the Security Council has proof “that confirms the presence of mass graves in Bucha. And this is not just an unverified accusation on social media. It is a horrifying fact. One the world must now reckon with.” she added on social media.
We have imagery that confirms the presence of mass graves in Bucha.
And this is not just an unverified accusation on social media.
It is a horrifying fact.
One the world must now reckon with. pic.twitter.com/3cry2sMEGU
— Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield (@USAmbUN) May 6, 2022
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