UNIFIL Continues Work Checking Israeli Withdrawal Line

Published June 27th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

United Nations peacekeepers were looking into an alleged Israeli encroachment into southern Lebanon Tuesday, working from the Israeli side of the border, UN spokesman, Timour Goksel, said.  

"Our team is still working from the Israeli side" the spokesman for the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) told AFP. 

Goksel said the site inspected was the seventh and last violation to be studied, which according to the UN Security Council needed further verification. 

The council asked Israel Monday to end border violations as soon as possible after the UN peacekeepers noted five encroachments on Lebanese territory in response to Beirut's complaints. 

Another alleged encroachment was rejected and the seventh called for further inspection. 

"They (the Israelis) are sending a team," he said. "We don't know how qualified they are. They did not respond to our complaints. We keep checking," he added. 

"They keep saying that they are looking into UNIFIL complaints about violations," Goksel said, but added, "We are having difficulties in getting them corrected on the ground," he continued. 

Lebanese sources say Beirut has identified 10 breaches of the withdrawal line fixed by the UN, but the UN has only taken seven into account. 

Three are in the eastern Mount Hermon area and do not come under Security Council resolution 425 on the Israeli pullout from southern Lebanon, and therefore are not covered by UNIFIL. 

They come under resolution 242, which covers the Golan Heights occupied by Israel since 1967, and therefore would be monitored by UNDOF (the United Nations Disengagement Observation Force -- NAQOURA, Lebanon (AFP) 




© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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