SOCHI, Russia (AP) — U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has reiterated his appeal for warring parties around the world to lay down arms during the Sochi Olympics.
Ban urged an observance of an "Olympic Truce" in a speech to the International Olympic Committee. He spoke Thursday, a day before the opening of the Winter Games in Russia.
Ban said: "I repeat my call, again and again, for all warring parties to lay down their weapons during the games." He cited conflicts in Syria, South Sudan and the Central African Republic.
Ban says a truce would allow for the delivery of "life-saving humanitarian aid to suffering people."
Ban adds that he opposes discrimination of any kind, including on grounds of "sexual orientation and gender identity."
Russia is under scrutiny for its law against gay "propaganda" among minors.