UN / LEBANON ISRAEL

19-Dec-2018 00:03:14
UN peacekeeping chief Jean-Pierre Lacroix said tunnels crossing from Lebanon into Israel were a matter of “serious concern” and constituted a violation of Resolution 1701. UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / LEBANON ISRAEL
TRT: 3:14
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 19 DECEMBER 2018, NEW YORK CITY
SHOTLIST
FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UNHQ exterior

19 DECEMBER 2018, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, United Nations:
“This is a matter of serious concern. The United Nations, including this Headquarters, has requested the Lebanese authorities to ensure urgent follow-up actions in accordance with the responsibilities of the Government of Lebanon pursuant to resolution 1701 (2006). UNIFIL has requested the Lebanese authorities to work with the Mission to identify and disable any tunnels crossing the Blue Line from Lebanon in violation of resolution 1701.”
4. Wide shot, Lacroix and Israeli ambassador at Security Council meeting
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Amal Mudallali, Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the United Nations:
“Just Imagine, esteemed members of the Council, if we were to call for a Security Council meeting, every time Israel violated Lebanon's sovereignty since 2006. You will be here in a 24/7 shift to address them. Lebanese officials accorded the problem of the tunnels the utmost careful attention fearing, rightly so, that Israel might use it as a pretext to threaten the stability of Lebanon.”
6. Med shot, Lacroix
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Amal Mudallali, Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the United Nations:
“In light of all of these violations and disregard to international legality, the Lebanese are asking a legitimate question: Are there aristocrats in violations for the International community? They are worried about double standards where Lebanese reports of Israeli violations of its sovereignty are buried in the archives, while Israel's complaints get Security Council meetings, and their actions go unpunished.”
8. Wide shot, Lacroix and Israeli ambassador at Security Council meeting
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Amal Mudallali, Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the United Nations:
“What the Prime Minister sees as self-defence, is seen as a threat in Beirut. When the Israeli planes fly low, or break the sound barrier, over populated areas, people feel the brunt of the Israeli violations. We all know too well how the so-called Israeli right of pre-emptive self-defence, which by the way has no international legal basis, is used to justify illegal aggressive acts and invasions.”
10. Wide shot, Security Council
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Danny Danon, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations:
“Hizbullah has built a terror terminal from Kfarkila into Israel. It stores weaponry and builds command and control centres. This is a reality. Imagine what will happen to this village in case we will have to defend ourselves.”
12. Wide shot, Security Council
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Danny Danon, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations:
“Hizbullah is hijacking the entire State of Lebanon to attack Israel and the Government of Lebanon has surrendered. By closing its eyes as its people live inside a ticking timebomb of terror tunnels, missiles, and rockets, the Government of Lebanon has failed its people.”
14. Wide shot, Security Council
15. SOUNDBITE (English) Danny Danon, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations:
“Hizbullah’s terror tunnels and missiles were not created without purpose, they were created for Hizbullah to use against us. If Hizbullah will have the arrogance to attack Israel, we will bury it in the rubble of Lebanon. We will never let terror win.”
16. Wide shot, Security Council
STORYLINE
UN peacekeeping chief Jean-Pierre Lacroix said tunnels crossing from Lebanon into Israel were a matter of “serious concern” and constituted a violation of Resolution 1701.

Addressing the Security Council today (19 Dec), Lacroix said the UN mission in Lebanon (UNIFIL) confirmed the existence of four tunnels in South Lebanon, with at least two crossing the Blue Line into Israel. He noted however that the tunnels did not appear to have exit points on the Israeli side. He added that the UN had requested the Lebanese authorities to ensure “urgent follow-up actions in accordance with the responsibilities of the Government of Lebanon pursuant to resolution 1701.” He said UNIFIL had also requested the Lebanese authorities to work with the mission to “identify and disable any tunnels crossing the Blue Line from Lebanon in violation of resolution 1701.”

Lebanese ambassador Amal Mudallali said discussions in the Security Council on Lebanon triggered memories of Israeli invasions and occupation of its land and wondered if this is a prelude to another aggression. She unscored that Israel violated resolution 1701 and Lebanese sovereignty some 1,800 times annually and breached Lebanese airspace 84 times a day in the past four months alone. She called on Council members to imagine if Lebanon was to call for a Security Council meeting, every time Israel violated Lebanon's sovereignty since 2006, adding, “You will be here in a 24/7 shift to address them.”

The Lebanese ambassador said, “In light of all of these violations and disregard to international legality, the Lebanese are asking a legitimate question: Are there aristocrats in violations for the International community? They are worried about double standards where Lebanese reports of Israeli violations of its sovereignty are buried in the archives, while Israel's complaints get Security Council meetings, and their actions go unpunished.”

Mudallali said Lebanese officials accorded “the problem of the tunnels the utmost careful attention fearing, rightly so, that Israel might use it as a pretext to threaten the stability of Lebanon”, adding tha President Michel Aoun and Prime Minister designate Saad Hariri reaffirmed Lebanon’s commitment to resolution 1701. She added that the Lebanese army was now deployed heavily in the area of operations to make sure that 1701 is abided by strictly.

The Lebanese ambassador quoted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in declaring Israeli flights over Lebanon as a “right of pre-emptive self-defence. She said, “What the Prime Minister sees as self-defence, is seen as a threat in Beirut. When the Israeli planes fly low, or break the sound barrier, over populated areas, people feel the brunt of the Israeli violations. We all know too well how the so-called Israeli right of preemptive self-defense, which by the way has no international legal basis, is used to justify illegal aggressive acts and invasions.”

Israeli ambassador Danny Danon said his country had monitored Hizbullah’s tunnel project through a wide intelligence operation. He said Operation Northern Shield was a protective measure to prevent a possible Hizbullah invasion and a pre-emptive measure on the Israeli side of the border. He said Hizbullah was also building a “terror terminal” from the Lebanese town of Kfarkila into Israel and told the Council, “Imagine what will happen to this village in case we will have to defend ourselves.”

Danon said Hizbullah was “hijacking the entire State of Lebanon to attack Israel and the Government of Lebanon has surrendered; by closing its eyes as its people live inside a ticking timebomb of terror tunnels, missiles, and rockets, the Government of Lebanon has failed its people.”

The Israeli ambassador said after a killing campaign in Syria, Iranian fighters, Shiaa militias, and Hizbullah were joining forces against his country. He stressed that Israeli had no intention of escalating the situation but noted that Israel would respond to any attack by Hizbullah with full force, using air, land and sea. He added, “Hizbullah’s terror tunnels and missiles were not created without purpose, they were created for Hizbullah to use against us. If Hizbullah will have the arrogance to attack Israel, we will bury it in the rubble of Lebanon. We will never let terror win.”
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