World facing Category 5 hurricane – UN chief

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres addresses a high-level event to mark the International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism via a video link, at the UN headquarters in New York, on Aug. 20, 2021. Guterres on Friday pledged the world body's support for victims of terrorism. (Loey Felipe/UN Photo/Handout via Xinhua)

UN Secretary General António Guterres on Wednesday said the world is “looking into the eye of a Category 5 hurricane” in a blunt speech to political leaders and business chiefs at Davos.

The UN boss delivered a scorching assessment of the “sorry state of our world” from the main stage at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort town.

Guterres said “our world is being plagued by a perfect storm on a number of fronts’’.

His litany of threats included the looming global recession, the war in Ukraine, deepening inequalities, a rapidly unfolding cost of living crisis, high debt levels “pounding” vulnerable countries, and the lingering scars of the pandemic.

Guterres said “the battle is being lost” in the fight against global warming and that every week brings “a new climate horror”.

He said the commitment to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels “is going up in smoke” and the world was hurtling towards a 2.8 degree increase. (dpa)

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