Lebanon decided to lodge an official complaint with the UN Security Council (UNSC) over Israel’s recent attacks on its southern territory.
In the Cabinet’s latest session, Prime Minister Hassan Diab tasked Minister of Foreign Affairs Nassif Hitti with filing the complaint after the Council of Ministers agreed to take Israel’s aggression to the UN.
“Lebanon remains committed to the implementation of UNSC Resolution 1701, but also has the right of self-defense,” Hitti said in a Tuesday press conference.
The Minister made a similar statement on Monday when the Lebanese southern border was temporarily ignited by Israeli artillery strikes following an alleged Hezbollah attack against its forces, which Hezbollah later denied.
“The government will file a complaint today with the Security Council to hold it and the international community accountable for what happened yesterday. There is clear aggression,” he stressed.
In turn, PM Diab has noted that Israel is pushing to “amend the mandate of UNIFIL” and modify the rules of engagement that have been active since 2006.
“Lebanon rejects the amendment of UNIFIL’s tasks, and any reduction in the number of UNIFIL [units] will weaken Resolution 1701,” the Prime Minister affirmed.
This comes after Israel argued that the Interim Force lacks the tools to fulfill its peacekeeping mission on Lebanon’s southern border, and pushed for an amendment of that mission to give it more power.
The mandate of UNIFIL is renewed annually by the UNSC and is set to renew by the end of this August.
Following the Monday attack, which damaged a civilian’s house in South Lebanon, PM Diab said he feared that the situation might “slip” and deteriorate, and called for “caution in the coming days.”
This rings true especially considering that Hezbollah promised in its statement that its retaliation for the recent Israeli airstrike in Syria, which cost it a fighter, is coming.