UN hits out at Lebanon’s ‘leaders’ during hearing on Hezbollah-Israel ceasefire

The UN special coordinator for Lebanon praised the role of the Lebanese Army and called for continued support to “this key institution.”

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The United Nations said Thursday that it was doing all it could to help Lebanon, but that ultimately “the responsibility for salvaging Lebanon lies in the hands” of the country’s leaders.

Speaking at the annual review on the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon (UNSCOL) Joanna Wronecka called for the immediate formation of a government in Lebanon to put the country on the path to recovery.

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“The United Nations is doing what it can to mitigate the situation, but ultimately the responsibility for salvaging Lebanon lies in the hands of Lebanon’s leaders,” Wronecka said.

Resolution 1701 put an end to the July 2006 war between Iran-backed Hezbollah and Israel. It called for a full cessation of hostilities, including attacks by Hezbollah and all offensive military operations by Israel.

The goal of the resolution was to enhance Lebanon’s security, state authority and sovereignty, Wronecka noted.

As a result, she said, she hoped for a real commitment to implement the resolution in its entirety.

The UNSCOL also praised the role of the Lebanese Army and called for continued support to “this key institution.”

Meanwhile, Israel’s ambassador to the UN sent a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres “urging them to condemn Hezbollah,” according to the Times of Israel.

During the Israeli bombardment of Gaza in May, rockets were fired into Israel multiple times. Contrary to previous rocket attacks, Hezbollah denied being behind the latest moves.

In the Israeli letter to the UN this week, Israel’s top diplomat to the UN said the incidents “provide another example of the volatile situation within UNIFIL’s Area of Operation and constitute clear evidence of the existence of unauthorized weapons and ammunition in the area.”

This comes ahead of the annual UN session next month to discuss the renewal of UN peacekeepers in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

Tel Aviv has consistently criticized UNIFIL, claiming that the peacekeeping force is not aggressive enough against Hezbollah.

UNIFIL troops are prohibited from entering private property without prior approval. Hezbollah has been accused of storing weapons in private residences and businesses near the Lebanese border with Israel.

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