BEIRUT

Middle East

UN chief warns of massive sectarian Iraq violence

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, addresses the audience during the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, at the European headquarters of the United Nations, in Geneva, June 17, 2014. AP Photo/Salvatore Di Nolfi

GENEVA: U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is warning that sectarian violence could blow up to huge proportions as Iraq's instability deepens.

Ban says that he is deeply disturbed at the reports of likely war crimes, "terrorist attacks" and other atrocities as The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) looks to link areas under its control on both sides of the Iraq-Syria border.

The U.N. chief told reporters Tuesday in Geneva that "there is a real risk of further sectarian violence on a massive scale in Iraq and beyond its borders" and urged the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to take a more inclusive approach.

He said "the Iraqi government should have one state, whether it is Sunni, Shiite or Kurds, they should be able to harmoniously live together."

 

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