Nationwide humanitarian cease-fire in Ukraine not possible: UN chief
Published: Apr 14, 2022 07:35 AM
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Wednesday that a nationwide humanitarian cease-fire in Ukraine seems to be out of reach at the moment.

"I don't think we had a chance to have a humanitarian cease-fire as we wanted globally (in Ukraine)," he said. "But there is a number of proposals that were made, and we are waiting for an answer from the Russian Federation in relation to those proposals, including different mechanisms for local cease-fires, for corridors, for humanitarian assistance, evacuations, and different other aspects that can minimize the dramatic impact on civilians that we are witnessing."

Guterres on March 28 launched an initiative for a humanitarian cease-fire in Ukraine and sent Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Martin Griffiths to Moscow and Kiev to explore the possibilities of a humanitarian cease-fire.

"That was our appeal for humanitarian reasons. But it doesn't seem possible," he said.

"Well, a global ceasefire, at the present moment, doesn't seem to be possible. But there are lots of things that can be done in order to guarantee evacuation of civilians from areas of fighting, in order of guaranteeing humanitarian access in a reliable situation," Guterres told reporters.

"We also proposed the creation of a mechanism involving the Russian Federation, Ukraine, and the UN and eventually others, humanitarian entities, in order to have a cell to permanently together manage and avoid incidents in these kinds of situations," he said.

Asked about his message to Russian President Vladimir Putin if he gets him on the phone, Guterres said, "The most important message is that we need to silence the guns, and we need to have a serious negotiation to achieve peace."