Will World War III take place?

THE 20th century saw bloody conflicts unfold around the world in two world wars.

But will the 21st century see the world return to war? Here’s what we know.

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The war in Ukraine continues after the Russian invasion in February 2022Credit: Reuters

Will there be a Third World War?

As tensions between Russia and the West continue to rise, many fear the crisis in Ukraine could escalate into a wider armed conflict.

Russian President Vladimir Putin began attacking Ukraine in the early hours of February 24, 2022.

Officials have warned that the escalating crisis could see Europe’s bloodiest conflict since World War II, killing thousands of civilians and triggering a major refugee crisis in Europe.

The exact death toll is unknown, although estimates indicate that in June 2022 Russia lost nearly 50,000 fighters.

As Putin’s health deteriorates, there are fears he may turn to nuclear weapons in desperation.

The use of nuclear weapons would change the way Ukraine’s allies view the situation.

Since Ukraine is not a member of NATO, the UK, the US and their allies are helping the nation without declaring war on Russia.

However, if Russia attacks NATO allies, action would be expected.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UKRAINIAN CRISIS

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has warned that “World War III” could break out if Russia continues to step up its attack.

There are fears that the conflict could worsen the global food crisis, despite the two sides signing an agreement to resume grain exports.

Away from the Ukraine conflict, international analysts are also wary of multiple flashpoints where China may want to pursue military action in the coming years.

Officials also warned not to underestimate the situation in Iran.

Israeli officials have warned that the West must do everything possible to prevent Iran from gaining access to nuclear weapons.

What are the current world conflicts?

Here’s what you need to know about some of the world’s biggest ongoing conflicts.

Russia-Ukraine

On February 24, 2022, Vladimir Putin launched a series of missile attacks against locations near Kyiv and in the northeastern city of Kharkiv near the Russian border.

Nearly ten million people have fled Ukraine since the start of the conflict, causing the biggest refugee crisis since World War II.

It was a major escalation in the Russian-Ukrainian war that began in 2014, when Russia invaded Crimea.

The conflict marks the first major war in Europe in decades.

China-Taiwan

Taiwan is said to be “preparing for war” after officials in Beijing warned there could be military consequences if the West intervenes in the dispute over the disputed territory.

China has threatened to impose a no-fly zone if US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visits.

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China has beefed up its military capabilities as tensions rise over Taiwan.

Experts fear the conflict could be worse than Russia’s assault on Ukraine.

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