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U.N. chief says essential to avoid escalation in the Gulf

LISBON, June 23 (Reuters) - United Nations chief Antonio Guterres said on Sunday that it is essential to avoid "any form of escalation" in the Gulf as tensions continue to rise following the shooting down of an unmanned U.S. drone this week by Iran. "The world cannot afford a major confrontation the Gulf," Guterres said on the sidelines of the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth in 2019. "Everybody must keep nerves of steel." (Reporting by Catarina Demony Editing by Louise Heavens)