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Aoun: UNIFIL must extend its mandate after Israel’s threats to Lebanon

Lebanese President Michel Aoun meets his Palestinian counterpart Mahmoud Abbas at the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) in Istanbul, Turkey, on 13 December 2017. [Gebran Bassil/Twitter]
Lebanese President Michel Aoun meets his Palestinian counterpart Mahmoud Abbas at the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) in Istanbul, Turkey, on 13 December 2017. [Gebran Bassil/Twitter]

Lebanese President, Michel Aoun, said yesterday that Israel’s persistent threats to Lebanon and the unstable conditions in the region call for an extension of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL)’s mandate, the Lebanese presidency said in a statement.

According to the statement, Aoun made the remarks during a meeting with Italian Defence Minister, Elisabetta Trenta, in Beirut.

Aoun explained that these forces play an important role in maintaining security and stability along Lebanon’s southern border in cooperation with the Lebanese army.

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The president also stressed that stability in the Middle East requires a just, comprehensive and lasting solution to the 70-year-old Palestinian issue.

Renta reiterated her country’s commitment to supporting the international forces in southern Lebanon, especially after the appointment of an Italian commander, adding that Rome supports Lebanon’s request “to extend UNIFIL mandate”.

The Italian minister arrived in Beirut on Monday and met with Parliament Speaker, Nabih Berri, and Prime Minister, Saad Hariri.

UNIFIL includes nearly 10,500 soldiers from 40 countries.

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