UNITED NATIONS (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is warning that the use of improvised explosive devices is increasing as conflicts become more urbanized and armed groups proliferate. He is urging nations to work together to curb the threat from those weapons as well as land mines and other remnants of war. The U.N. chief told the Security Council on Thursday that in the preceding three years U.N. funding made more than 560 square kilometers (215 square miles) safe from IEDs in global hotspots from Afghanistan and Iraq to Cambodia and Colombia. But he adds that despite progress by the U.N. and other organizations, “challenges have intensified,” including from the COVID-19 pandemic limiting access for mine clearing operations.
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