In apparent reference to Hezbollah, UN calls on Lebanon to commit to disassociation
The Security Council also voiced the need for a “swift, independent, impartial, thorough, and transparent investigation” into the Beirut blast. On Monday, the judge investigating the explosion was forced to stop his work after MP Nouhad Machnouk filed a complaint over what he claims is the judge’s “impartiality.”
The UN Security Council Monday called on Lebanon to commit to a policy of disassociation from “any external conflicts,” an apparent reference to Iran-backed Hezbollah’s participation in wars across the region.
“The members of the Security Council called upon all Lebanese parties to implement a tangible policy of disassociation from any external conflicts, as an important priority, as spelled out in previous declarations, in particular the 2012 Baabda Declaration,” a statement from the Security Council read.
Hezbollah has admitted to intervening in the neighboring Syria war to prop up President Bashar al-Assad, while also fighting alongside other Shiite militias.
The group says it is fighting extremists, while much of the international community has accused them of slaughtering opposition fighters.
Hezbollah has also sent fighters, advisers and officials to Yemen and Iraq.
Their participation in these wars has led Gulf states, mainly Saudi Arabia, to bring its decadeslong support to Beirut to a near-halt.
Separately, the Security Council called on the new Lebanese government to “swiftly and transparently implement the well-known, necessary and tangible reforms” needed to unlock billions of dollars in international aid, soft loans and grants.
“Such reforms are key to respond to the dire needs and legitimate aspirations of the Lebanese population regarding the urgent security, economic, social and humanitarian challenges facing the country,” the 15-member UN body said. “They also underlined the importance of delivering those reforms in order to ensure effective international support.”
Lebanon is scheduled to hold parliamentary elections next year, leading to a vote for the new president. Monday’s statement urged PM Najib Mikati’s government to hold the elections on time and to start prepping “without delay the necessary groundwork ahead of this crucial step.”
The UN also voiced the need for a “swift, independent, impartial, thorough, and transparent investigation” into the Beirut blast. On Monday, the judge investigating the explosion was forced to stop his work after MP Nouhad Machnouk filed a complaint over what he claims is the judge’s “impartiality.”
Machnouk, the former interior minister, is seen as one of the more corrupt politicians in the country.