Creating people's geographies
05 Aug 2006 22:34:50 GMT | Source: Reuters
UNITED NATIONS, Aug 5 (Reuters) – Lebanon is unhappy with a U.S.-French draft resolution presented on Saturday to the U.N. Security Council on ending the fighting in Lebanon, a Foreign Ministry official said.
After seeing the text, the Lebanese government remains committed to the seven-point plan adopted last month by its cabinet, which includes Hizbollah ministers, Lebanese Foreign Ministry official Nouhad Mahmoud said.
“We would have liked to see our concerns more reflected in the text,” he said. But he stopped short of rejecting outright the U.S.-French draft, which aims to end the fighting between Israel and the Hizbollah guerrilla group.
“Unfortunately, it lacked, for instance, a call for the withdrawal of Israeli forces which are now in Lebanon. That is a recipe for more confrontation,” Mahmoud said.
Beirut also was unhappy that the resolution does not call for the Shebaa Farms area to be put under U.N. control, as Lebanon has asked, while its future status is figured out, Mahmoud said.
The tiny strip of Israeli-occupied land was deemed by the United Nations to be part of Syria unless Lebanon, which claims the territory, demarcated new borders with Syria, which has not happened.
Hizbollah, before the current crisis erupted last month, insisted on remaining armed, even after joining the Lebanese government, to drive Israeli troops out of Lebanon territory. The U.S.-French draft would delay a resolution of this dispute until a later date.
Mahmoud said Lebanon had proposed some amendments to make the draft more acceptable to Beirut.
“It must address the concerns of the Lebanese people. Otherwise it won’t fly,” he said.
The seven-point plan calls for an immediate cease-fire, the withdrawal of Israeli forces from southern Lebanon, the return of Lebanese people driven from their homes by the fighting and the deployment of U.N. and Lebanese forces in the south, along with the disarmament of Hizbollah.