UN: UN Secretary-General António Guterres told the UN Security Council on Thursday (May 5) that a third operation is being carried out to evacuate information from the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol and the besieged Azov Starr steel plant. Evacuate civilians.
In two operations over the past week, the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have so far helped nearly 500 civilians flee the area. Guterres declined to give details of the new operation “to avoid undermining a 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 told the 15-member Security Council. “We must continue to do all we can to get people out of these hellscapes.”
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.
China s UN ambassador, Zhang Jun, described the humanitarian crisis caused by the conflict as “dire” and said increasing civilian casualties were “deeply lamentable.” He called on all parties to exercise maximum restraint to avoid hurting civilians.
“Delivering weapons will not deliver peace and the conflict has no winners,” Zhang said, pushing for talks to end the war.
Guterres has also warned that Russia s Feb 24 invasion of Ukraine was putting even more pressure on the developing world.
He told the council that he was ready to push ahead with talks on “reintegrating agricultural production in Ukraine and food and fertilizer production in Russia and Belarus into world markets despite the war”.
Russia called the operation in Ukraine a “special operation”.