UN pretends all is well in southern Lebanon

Wednesday, July 02, 2008 |  Israel Today Staff

A United Nations commission charged with monitoring implementation of the resolution that ended the 2006 Second Lebanon War told the Security Council in its annual report on Tuesday that Israel's claims that Hizballah is rearming in violation of that resolution are unfounded.

Israeli leaders have for months been pointing out that Hizballah is receiving new shipments of advanced arms and is reestablishing itself in southern Lebanon in direct violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701. Those assertions have been backed up by opposition Lebanese political figures, as well as UN personnel.

While Tuesday's report did admit that Hizballah gunmen sometimes prevent UN monitors from doing their job, it failed to mention the systematic disruption of monitoring efforts, reported Israel's Ynet news portal.

In the latest reported example of such activity, Ha'aretz reports that a team of UN monitors last month found and began photographing unusual underground cables running across a portion of southern Lebanon.

Local Lebanese villagers who are loyal to Hizballah quickly surrounded the UN personnel and began stoning them. The incident was resolved when the UN members agreed to delete the images from their cameras.

Resolution 1701 stipulates that Hizballah is not to operate in southern Lebanon, that all weapons shipments to the group are to be prevented, and that Hizballah itself must disarm and never again pose a military threat to Israel.

But UN sources told Ynet that until the international forces based in southern Lebanon submit an official report to the Security Council that the resolution is being violated, the world body can not take action.

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