Soleimani: Top official urges UN to prevent another Gulf war

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A senior United Nations (UN) official, Ms Agnès Callamard, has urged the organisation  and its leadership to “step up” to prevent another war in the Gulf.
Callamard, who is the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions, made the call in a tweet on Friday.
She was reacting to a statement by UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, on the rising tension between the U.S. and Iran over Friday’s killing of a top Iranian military commander in a U.S. strike in Iraq.
In the two-paragraph statement by his spokesperson, Mr Farhan Haq, the UN Chief had urged “maximum restraint’’ by all parties, saying “the world cannot afford another war in the Gulf’’.
“The Secretary-General has consistently advocated for de-escalation in the Gulf.  He is deeply concerned with the recent escalation.
“This is a moment in which leaders must exercise maximum restraint. The world cannot afford another war in the Gulf,’’ Haq said.

Soleimani: Top official urges UN to prevent another Gulf War
Soleimani

But Callamard said the statement “does not bode well’’, urging UN and its leadership to use “all the legal tools and platform’’ at their disposal to deescalate the situation.
“There is no more pressing time for the #UN and its leadership to step up than now.
“But this statement does not bode well. You have the legal tools and the platform. Please use them,’’ she tweeted.
During Friday’s noon briefing at the UN Headquarters in New York, Haq had a difficult time with UN correspondents, who pressed him for information on the subject.
The journalists sought to know the diplomatic efforts being made by the Secretary-General to resolve the matter.
Haq said the UN chief had made a number of calls, including to the U.S. ambassador “just in the past half hour to ensure resolution of the matter through diplomatic means’’.
“As you know, we have UN missions and diplomatic efforts throughout the region.
“There is the UN assistance mission in Iraq, our special representative there has been very active in working with the various groups to make sure that the situation on the ground can be as stable.
“And we will continue to work with all parties to further the cause of stability in Iraq,’’ he said.
Soleimani: Top official urges UN to prevent another Gulf War
Soleimani

The Iranian commander, Maj.-Gen. Qasem Soleimani, was killed at Baghdad Airport early on Friday on the orders of President Donald Trump.
The 62-year-old led Iranian operations in the Middle East as head of the elite Quds Force.
Trump said he caused millions of deaths.
In reaction, Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has threatened “severe revenge” on those responsible for Soleimani’s death.
Iran’s National Security Council has also vowed to exact “harsh vengeance” on the U.S. for the killing.
“The U.S. regime will be responsible for the consequences of this criminal adventurism.
“This was the biggest U.S. strategic blunder in the West Asia region, and America will not easily escape its consequences,” the council said in a statement.
The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad has urged American citizens to “depart Iraq immediately” following the airstrike.
In a security alert issued on Friday morning, the embassy reportedly told citizens to “depart via airline while possible, and failing that, to other countries via land”.

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