Lebanese President Michel Aoun said yesterday that his country will ask the United Nations Security Council to extend the mandate of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) for another year without change.
Aoun made the announcement during a meeting with the ambassadors of the five permanent members of the UNSC and the United Nations Special Coordinator in Lebanon, Jan Kubis, and in the presence of Prime Minister Hassan Diab.
The Lebanese cabinet decided to file a request to the UNSC to extend UNIFIL’s mission for an additional year without modifying its mandate or its rules of engagement to enable it to continue to play its vital role, Aoun said, stressing on the importance of strengthening the partnership between UNIFIL and the Lebanese army in monitoring Israel’s daily air, land and sea violations.
For his part, Kubis affirmed the UN’s readiness to assist and support Lebanon.
UNIFIL’s mandate expires in August 2020. Israel and the United States have been lobbying for its powers to be enhanced as a precondition of its renewal.