UNITED NATIONS – U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres started off the year with a warning about the geopolitical tensions, which he said are at their “highest level this century” and continuing to escalate.
“Even nuclear non-proliferation can no longer be taken for granted. This cauldron of tensions is leading more and more countries to take unpredicted decisions with unpredictable consequences and a profound risk of miscalculation,” Guterres said.
- Top Iranian military commander Qassem Soleimani will be buried in his hometown of Kerman this week after a three-day, multi-city funeral procession after his assassination by US drone.
- More than a million people flooded the streets across four cities, with crowding getting so bad that dozens of people died in a stampede on Tuesday.
- Top Iranian leaders including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Hassan Rouhani also publicly paid their respects.
- The grandeur of Soleimani’s funeral highlights his hero status in the country, and gives a glimpse of how hard Iran is willing to strike back against the US.
- On Tuesday Ali Shamkhani, Iran’s security chief, said the country had drawn up 13 options for retaliation against the US, and even the weakest one would be a “historic nightmare.”
The UN Secretary-General António Guterres called on world leaders to de-escalate geopolitical tensions on Monday, which he described as being “at their highest level this century” as the new decade dawns.