UN Hands Lebanon its Conclusions on Demarcating Border with Israel
The United Nations has given Lebanon its conclusions about overcoming three stumbling blocks to certification of Israel's pullout from Lebanon, a source close to the UN delegation said Saturday.
"UN experts submitted overnight their conclusions about the three points on the Lebanese-Israeli border which were causing a problem for the Lebanese government," the delegate said on condition he not be named.
"These conclusions are still temporary. Lebanon has not given its official response," he added.
The differences are over demarcating the border, around the villages of Rmeich in Lebanon, Ghajar in a part of Syria controlled by Israel since 1967, and Misgav'Am in Israel, sources told AFP.
Lebanon says the line UN cartographers set for the Israeli withdrawal should match as closely as possible the international borders established in 1923.
Sources close to the UN delegation headed by special UN envoy Roed-Larsen said the delegation was still consulting with Lebanon on demarcating the border, but did not say if Roed-Larsen would have new talks with President Emile Lahoud.
"Whatever happens, Mr. Roed-Larsen will travel to Israel on Saturday to examine the same issues with the Israeli government," a source close to the UN said.
Roed-Larsen told reporters after three hours of talks with Lahoud and Prime Minister Salim Hoss on Friday that the two sides were close to an agreement allowing certification of the withdrawal.
"We have by and large reached an agreement on all relevant issues related to the implementation of Resolution 425," which calls for Israel's withdrawal from Lebanon, Roed-Larsen told reporters.
Certification is required before a beefed-up force of UN peacekeeping troops deploy along the south.
The UN deployment is to pave the way for the Lebanese authorities to reassert their authority in the region, with UN officials saying Beirut will be alone responsible for security -- BEIRUT (AFP)
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