Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Israel demands Security Council strengthen UNIFIL’s mandate

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Following an attack by the terror organization on an IDF force near the Lebanese border, Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations (UN), Gilad Erdan, on Wednesday submitted a letter to members of the Security Council demanding significant changes be made to the United Nations Interim Force In Lebanon’s (UNIFIL) mandate to improve the UN force’s ability to fully access and monitor areas in which Hezbollah operates.

The appeal of Erdan comes as part of a diplomatic effort led by the US and Israel to affect the Security Council’s decision on renewing the mandate at the end of the month.

“There is no justification for having an ineffective force operate in territory in which Hezbollah is using to arm itself and turn southern Lebanon into a terrorist base. Only a significant change to UNIFIL’s purpose and capabilities on the ground can justify its existence,” Erdan stated.

Erdan warned that Hezbollah’s actions undermine stability in the region and will lead to devastating consequences. Furthermore, Erdan included a map of southern Lebanon that notes the areas where Hezbollah tunnels and missile launchers were discovered, as well as observation posts of “Green Without Borders”, an NGO that Hezbollah uses as a front to observe IDF soldiers.

Israel also drew on data from UN Secretary-General reports that indicated that the access of UNIFIL soldiers to these areas are also blocked.

Therefore, Israel has demonstrated to the Council a clear connection between the areas where significant terrorist activity takes place and where the access of UNIFIL is blocked.