Security Council renews mandate of UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon

30 August 2017 &#150 The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Lebanon for one year.

In a unanimously adopted resolution, the 15-member body requested the Secretary-General to look at ways to enhance the efforts of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), including through increasing the mission’s visible presence, through patrols and inspections, within its existing mandate and capabilities.

Originally established in 1978, UNIFIL was greatly reinforced after the 2006 fighting to oversee the cessation of hostilities between Israel and the Lebanese group Hizbollah. It is tasked with ensuring that the area between the so-called &#39Blue Line&#39 &#8211 separating Israel and Lebanon &#8211 and the Litani River is free of unauthorized weapons, personnel and assets. It also cooperates with the Lebanese Armed Forces so they can fulfil their security responsibilities.

UNIFIL’s initial mandate included confirming the withdrawal of Israeli forces from southern Lebanon, and assisting the Government of Lebanon in ensuring the return of its effective authority in the area.

The Council affirmed its strong continuing commitment to the existing mandate of UNIFIL, also urging all parties to cooperate fully with the Security Council and the Secretary-General to make tangible progress towards a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution as envisioned in resolution 1701, which helped end the 2006 hostilities in Lebanon between Israel and the Hizbollah.

VIDEO: Some 450 daily activities – like this one with the Lebanese Armed Forces – by UNIFIL peacekeepers have kept the peace in south Lebanon for 11 long years, benefiting the communities living in close proximity north and south of the Blue Line.