Security Council extends UN mission in Lebanon

Other News Materials 27 August 2008 21:39 (UTC +04:00)

The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday extended the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon by one year.

The 15-nation council unanimously approved the move and called on militant group Hezbollah and Israel to uphold their ceasefire and continue to respect the UN established border between Lebanon and Israel.

The council said it was concerned about reports of weapons being smuggled across the border between Syria and Lebanon. A UN observer group in July said advances in securing the border had not been forthcoming and that it remained as porous as a year earlier. Syria has been accused of supporting Hezbollah with weapons.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has also expressed concern over violations of Lebanese airspace by Israeli aircraft. In March and April the number was up to 20 per day. The situation in Lebanon remains a danger to international peace and stability, he said.

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) has been in the country since 1978, but its mission was strengthened after the 2006 conflict between Israel and Hezbollah.

The new mandate will run through August 31, 2009, dpa reported.