|Ban: Hizbullah Drone May Threaten Lebanon Stability|
|[An Nahar] U.N. Secretary General Resolution 1559. has warned that Hizbullah's sending of a reconnaissance drone into Israel's airspace may threaten stability in , in his 16th report on the implementation of U.N. Security Council |
According to LBCI television, Ban also voiced his concerns over the Syrian crisis' repercussions on the situation in , praising the stances of President and Prime Minister in regards to the so-called self-disassociation policy.
Exclusive sources told LBCI that the U.N. chief cautions in the report that "Hizbullah's activity in Syria threatens stability in ," pointing out that he urged the Syrian government to respect 's and integrity.
Ban also condemned the incidents that took place on the Lebanese side of the border, according to LBCI.
Hizbullah chief declared last week that his group had sent a drone over Israel, noting that Hizbullah has the right to keep sending UAVs as long as Israel is violating 's airspace.
"A sophisticated reconnaissance aircraft was sent from Lebanese territory ... and traveled hundreds of kilometers (miles) over the sea before crossing enemy lines and into occupied Paleostine," Nasrallah said.
|Hezbollah slams new UN bid to disarm it|
|[Iran Press TV] Resolution 1559, describing the move as part of a hostile effort against the Lebanese resistance movement. has taken a swipe at a recent UN briefing on the outdated |
The reaction came after the UN's Special Representative for the Implementation of Resolution 1559, Terje Roed-Larsen, delivered a report on the document before the Security Council in a closed door session on Friday, a Press TV correspondent reported.
Resolution 1559 was adopted by the Security Council in 2004, months before the of former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri. It was co-sponsored by the US and under Presidents George W. Bush and Jack Chirac during a period of intense animosity between the West and Syria.
In addition to demanding the disarmament of , the resolution also called for demarcating the border between Syria and and the withdrawal of Syrian troops from , which was carried out early in 2005.
The Lebanese resistance movement of slammed the briefing as unjust and biased, describing Roed-Larsen as an "international official servant in the Zionist media system that reflects the full participation of hostility towards , Arabs and all just causes in the world."
"The Secretary General remains convinced that the disarmament of the s in , in particular , can best be achieved by a Lebanese-led political process," UN Farhan Haq said.
Roed-Larsen has delivered more than a dozen such reports to the Security Council, although 1559 was rendered obsolete by Resolution 1701, which was drafted with the intent to resolve the 2006 Israel- conflict, triggered by a major Israeli attack against the Lebanese soil with the announced objective of taking out the resistance.
Roed-Larson's efforts to deliver briefings on an outdated resolution have raised serious questions among observers.
"The Security Council members want him to remain. The Secretary General wants him to remain. The major player, the United States, wants of course this 1559 to stay on in order to bring pressure on the resistance of . They want to disarm the and they want pressure so they use these occasions in order to force such disarmaments," Nizar Abboud of Lebanese daily al-Akhbar said.
Abboud adds that the recent events across the Arab world make Roed-Larsen's work as the special envoy for even more redundant.
Roed-Larsen has also labeled as a dangerous place, where he reportedly does not visit -- which brings into question the sources of the information comprising his biannual reports to the Security Council.
|U.S. Lawmaker: Hizbullah Is Rearming, Lebanese Government Becoming More Subordinate to Iran and Syria|
|The Lebanese government is increasingly "subordinate" to Iran and Syria, who have been helping Hizbullah rearm, a top U.S. told U.N. special envoy Terje Roed-Larsen.|
Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told the diplomat on Tuesday that she was "concerned" U.S. and U.N. efforts in were failing to counter Hizbullah's growing power.
"Hizbullah, with the help of Iran and Syria, is massively rearming, the Lebanese government is becoming more and more subordinate to Iran and Syria, and the line between the Lebanese Armed Forces and Hizbullah is gradually being erased," she said in a statement summarizing their meeting.
"We need to have a clear vision of what the end-state is and how we can achieve it.
"Above all, we must protect the security of the U.S. and our allies, uphold 's , and ensure that those responsible for (late) Prime Minister (Rafik) Hariri's murder are held responsible," the Florida added.
Roed-Larsen has been overseeing U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559, a text adopted in 2004 by the 15-member body that calls for "the disbanding and disarmament" of all militias in .
|Nasrallah: The Hand that Tries to Reach Our Members Will Be Cut Off|
|[An Nahar] Hizbullah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah warned Thursday his group will "cut off the hand" of anyone who tries to arrest any of its partisans over the 2005 of ex-premier Rafik Hariri.|
"Whoever thinks the resistance could possibly accept any accusation against any of its jihadists or leaders is mistaken -- no matter the pressures and threats," Nasrallah said in a speech on closed-circuit television to mark Hizbullah's Martyr Day.
"Whoever thinks that we will allow the arrest or detention of any of our jihadists is mistaken," he said, describing his political rivals as "in a hurry to see an indictment" in the five-year-old case.
"The hand that attempts to reach (our members) will be cut off," he added, prompting thunderous applause from hundreds of his party supporters gathered in the southern suburb of Beirut to commemorate the occasion.
The Special Tribunal for (STL), a U.N.-backed investigation into the Hariri murder, is reportedly set to issue an indictment soon that will implicate high-ranking members of Hizbullah.
Nasrallah, whose party fought a devastating war with Israel in 2006, said his movement would defend itself against any accusation through whatever means it found appropriate.
"Whoever thinks that the resistance will not defend itself and its honor against any accusation or attack by whatever means it finds appropriate, in agreement with its allies in , is mistaken," he said.
The Shiite leader also said his party -- the most powerful military and political force in the country -- was ready for another round with its arch-foe.
"We await the day the indictment will be released," he said. "We are ready for any Israeli war on and will again be victorious, Inshallah.
"Whoever thinks that threatening us with another Israeli war will scare us is mistaken," he added. "On the contrary, whoever speaks of another war is bearing good news and not threatening us."
Nasrallah's speech Thursday was the latest move in an increasingly heated campaign Hizbullah has launched to fend off the anticipated STL accusation against high-ranking members in connection with the killing of Hariri and 22 others in a Beirut bombing on February 14, 2005.
The head of the Iranian- and Syrian-backed movement has warned against any accusations by the tribunal and said further Lebanese cooperation with the court would be tantamount to an attack on his powerful group.
Despite Nasrallah's warnings, Prime Minister Saad Hariri -- son of the slain ex-premier -- has vowed to see the tribunal through.
On the other hand, Nasrallah noted that Israeli Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom "has stated that the indictment will lead to the implementation of (U.N. Security Council) Resolution 1559, which was engineered by the U.S. and France."
"The Lebanese today have a golden opportunity to save their country from an American and Israeli plot," Nasrallah said, as he renewed his charge that the STL was a U.S.-Israeli ploy to "guillotine the resistance."
"The Lebanese have one of two choices: either they hand the country over to ... (U.S. envoy Jeffrey) Feltman and (U.S. Secretary of State Hillary) Clinton, or they cooperate with Syria and ."
Leaders of regional power-houses Syria and , which back 's two rival coalitions respectively, have met several times in an attempt to stem tensions in Beirut.
Western countries have stepped up their backing for the tribunal, with the United States announcing a 10-million-dollar donation to the court and both Feltman and U.S. Senator visiting Beirut.
Kerry, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has urged the U.N. Security Council to "pay very close attention" to , pushing for "pre-emptive diplomacy" to calm the volatile situation.
Analysts have warned the standoff could lead to the collapse of the government and a repeat of the 18-month political deadlock that degenerated into deadly and brought close to civil war in May 2008.
|Larsen Says 'Heavily Armed Militias' Put Lebanon in 'Hyper-Dangerous Situation'|
|[An Nahar] Terje Roed-Larsen, U.N. Special Envoy for the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1559, said Thursday that is in a "hyper-dangerous" state because of the "heavily armed militias" operating in it.|
The envoy, Terje Roed Larsen, called for urgent efforts to disarm groups such as Hizbullah in , warning that there is "a hurricane blowing up" in the Middle East.
"Militias holding arms in today is an intimidation in itself, particularly when it is paired with reckless and irresponsible rhetoric," Larsen told s after briefing the U.N. Security Council in a closed session on .
" is more conflicted every day we see now. And we know that in we have militias which are very heavily armed and increasingly so and this creates a hyper-dangerous situation," he said.
He did not comment on U.S. allegations that Syria and Iran were providing arms to Hizbullah but said: "There is a consistency between allegations we are hearing and statements from Hizbullah itself concerning their capabilities."
"These weapons are of course not coming from the moon."
The Middle East is "a region where we have cross-winds and a hurricane blowing up," Larsen warned.
"In the middle of those cross-winds there is a tent standing and that tent is critically held up by two poles. One is the ian one and one is the Lebanese. If one of those poles crack, the whole tent will go down.
"In other words, if the Lebanese situation is destabilized I am afraid that it will have rippling effects across the region," he told s.
|Hizbullah Slams Ban, Says Report 'Political Meddling in STL Affairs'|
|Hizbullah on Wednesday criticized U.N. chief Resolution 1559 was meddling in the political affairs of the Special Tribunal for . , saying his report on |
Ban's report "written by staff member of the Zionist entity, Terje Roed-Larsen, is interference in Lebanese internal affairs and political interference in the affairs of the International Tribunal," said a statement issued by Hizbullah.
Ummm... What makes you say that?
The report by the U.N. Secretary-General said has been hit by a new climate of "uncertainty" that could cause new instability across the region.
Ban said Hizbullah's arsenal "remains distinct from and may exceed the capabilities of the Lebanese Armed Forces, adding that Hizbullah's military strength "creates an atmosphere of intimidation and poses a key challenge to the safety of Lebanese civilians and to the government's monopoly on the legitimate use of force."
Anybody but Hezbollah and its sock puppets would call that a cool statement of fact. In the alternate reality of Hezbollah, however...
"It seems that Mr. was in a deep sleep and he did not realize that Hizbullah, , has been at the heart of the Lebanese political equation through its presence in Parliament and in Government. "For this reason, (Ban) apparently is unaware of the right of all peoples, including the Lebanese people, to resist occupation.
That statement says nothing about the fact that Hezbollah is an armed camp within the Lebanese state and outside the state's control.
"It seems that he did not have time to examine the ministerial statement which gives the right to Lebanese Resistance," said the statement.
... a statement made under intimidation...
Hizbullah said Ban also had "forgotten" the position announced by President Michel Suleiman when he addressed the U.N. Security Council last month in which he affirmed 's and Lebanese right to use all available means to liberate Lebanese territory and the right of self-defense."
|Hezbollah slams UN interference' in Lebanon|
|BEIRUT - Hezbollah on Friday slammed interference' in Lebanese affairs by UN envoy Terje Roed-Larsen and warned that its arsenal was off-limits after the diplomat accused militias of creating tension in Lebanon.|
They really don't like it when a UN official points out the obvious ...
Hezbollah condemns this attempt to create dissent and sedition among the Lebanese under the guise of advice and guidance,' the Shiite militant party said in a statement. Roed-Larsen's continuous attempts to interfere in Lebanese affairs and incite the Lebanese to fight one another are unacceptable for an international official working for peace in the region,' it said.
On Thursday the UN envoy had warned of the need to address the presence in Lebanon of heavily armed militias, which he said was a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559, adopted in 2004. The resolution calls for the disbanding and disarmament' of all militias in the country.
As long as these unresolved issues are there, for instance the existence of heavily armed militias in Lebanon... there will always be tension,' Roed-Larsen said after briefing the Security Council on a report on the implementation of Resolution 1559.
But the Syria- and Iran-backed Hezbollah warned that its arms were only to be discussed among the Lebanese as part of a comprehensive national defence strategy, and neither Roed-Larsen nor any other officials, international or not, can interfere.'
Hezbollah is the only Lebanese group that did not disarm after Lebanon's 1975-1990 civil war, arguing that its weapons were necessary to fight Israel.
|UN chief slams Hizbullah ŽintimidationŽ|
|[Jerusalem Post Middle East] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that Hizbullah is making an effort to create "intimidation" in Lebanon ahead of parliamentary elections scheduled for June, AFP reported late Monday. He was also quoted as voicing concern for Hizbullah activities in Egypt and the Gaza Strip. |
In a report to the UN Security Council, Ban said, "The threat that armed groups and militias pose to the sovereignty and stability of the Lebanese state cannot be overstated."
"It creates an atmosphere of intimidation in the context of the upcoming parliamentary elections. It also undermines the stability of the region, and is incompatible with the objectives of Resolution 1559," he added, referring to a 2004 resolution which called for the "disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias."
The UN chief described the groups arsenal as "a direct challenge to the sovereignty of the Lebanese state and an obstacle for the conduct of the normal democratic process in the country."
On Friday, Ban condemned what he said was Hizbullah's interference in the affairs of another country. "I am alarmed that Hizbullah publicly admitted to providing support to Gaza-based militants from Egyptian territory," he said.
"Such activity indicates that Hizbullah operates outside Lebanese territory and beyond its stated national agenda. I condemn such unwarranted interference in the domestic affairs of a sovereign member state," he said.
Ban renewed his call for Hizbullah to disarm and to transform into "a solely political party."
The group has rejected local and foreign calls to disarm, saying its arsenal of weapons and rockets is needed to defend Lebanon against any Israeli attack.
|Syria wants UN to back off on Lebanon - report|
|Syria has asked UN chief Ban Ki-moon to prevent his special envoy Terje Roed-Larsen from interfering in Damascus' relations with Lebanon and stick to his mandate, Al-Akhbar newspaper reported Friday. The newspaper said that Syria's ambassador to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari delivered an official letter to Ban accusing his special envoy for the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1559 of "misinterpreting the logical framework of his mandate." About Syrian-Lebanese relations, the letter said: "The establishment of diplomatic ties and demarcation of the border between Syria and Lebanon are issues linked to the sovereignty of countries and are solved through agreement between the Syrian and Lebanese governments."|
|Armed Hezbollah a challenge to Lebanon : Ban Ki-moon|
|Hezbollah's continued armed strength poses a key challenge to Lebanese sovereignty, UN chief Ban Ki-moon said in a report this week, prompting criticism on Wednesday from the Shiite movement. "Hezbollah's maintenance of a para-military capacity poses a key challenge to the government's monopoly on the legitimate use of force," Ban said in his seventh report on implementation of Security Council Resolution 1559.|
He reiterated his view that the disarming and disbanding of Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias, called for under the resolution which was adopted in 2004 should take place through "an inclusive political dialogue." Ban said Syria and Iran "bear a significant responsibility in supporting such a process, for the sake of Lebanon's and the wider region's security, stability and welfare."
|UN urged to investigate Lahoud's crimes|
|As soon as Lebanon's former president Emile Lahoud stepped down and left the presidential palace the International Lebanese Committee (ILC) for UN Resolution 1559 issued the following press release urging the investigation of the crimes committed during Lahoud's term in office |
The International Lebanese Committee ( ILC) for UN Resolution 1559 expresses its satisfaction that former President Emile Lahoud has finally left the Presidential Palace in Baabda after more than three years from his illegal extension of power, a breach of laws and principles which was addressed by one stipulation of the UN 1559 issued in September 2004, one day after the constitutional piracy was forced on the Lebanese People. However now that Mr. Lahoud has left the office, the Committee is calling on the UN special prosecutor in the Terrorist attacks in Lebanon since the fall of 2004 and the special envoy of the Secretary General of the UN to investigate General Lahoud regarding the following serious charges:The Committee 1559 also calls on the parents and relatives of all the victims mentioned above to inform the UN Investigation Commission about all questions related to these crimes and acts of terror, so that the investigation with General Lahoud can be comprehensive.
|Lebanon's Aoun Must Denounce His Agreement with Hezbollah|
|General Michel Aoun, the former prime minister of Lebanon who is now seeking its presidency, must first denounce his agreement with Hezbollah to be able to move back under the umbrella of the Cedars Revolution. Anything below that is just a tactical dance going no where. |
Many recent claims made by the General on Lebanons NBN Television need to be responded to. For example, he said that no one paid the price he and Hezbollah paid for the sovereignty of Lebanon. Yet while the Lebanese people certainly value the sacrifices of the Lebanese soldiers and officers who died or were wounded in the battles against the Syrian occupation army, an agreement with Hezbollah is not a logical step in the same direction, for Hezbollah and the Syrian occupation have had and continue to have a joint war room.
Aoun claimed the United States was against him and that it was meddling in the way the Lebanese ought to elect their president. Perhaps General Aoun doesn't understand what drives Washington in Lebanon and worldwide: it is the war on terror. America will not support any president, elected either with two thirds or with just 51%, if he or she has an agreement with an organization on the U.S. terror list. And if the Parliament elects a president committed to the U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559 and the campaign against terror, he or she will be supported regardless of the constitutional process.
The general also said he has the support of the people, but that support was given based on a program that was negated by the general. So after the agreement with Hezbollah, Michel Aoun doesn't have a mandate from the voters, and any non-democratic action against a president elected by simple majority will be considered as a coup not the other way around.