The Head of Mission and Force Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), Major-General Paolo Serra, today chaired a regular tripartite meeting with senior officials from the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) and the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) at the UN Position at Ras Al Naqoura crossing.
During the meeting, issues relevant to the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 1701 were discussed, including the situation along the Line of Withdrawal (Blue Line), the ongoing visible marking of the Blue Line, violations and incidents as well as the issue of withdrawal of Israeli forces from northern Ghajar.
Also on the agenda was a discussion on maritime security issues that was carried out in the presence of naval experts from UNIFIL and the parties.
Following the tripartite meeting, Major-General Serra said: “I am pleased that today we continued discussions on the very important issues relating to maritime security. In accordance with our mandate, UNIFIL encourages the parties to work on maritime security arrangements in to order minimize the risk of incidents and any potential escalation of the situation. To this end, we intend to continue discussions with the parties in the coming days both at the bilateral and tripartite levels.”
He added: “It was overall a constructive meeting. Both parties expressed their full support and commitment to work together with UNIFIL for the implementation of the relevant provisions of resolution 1701 and to maintain calm in the area.”
Continuing from the special tripartite meeting of 23 February, follow-up discussions were also held today on the planned construction of a wall to replace the existing Israeli technical fence along the Blue Line near the town of Kafr Kila as an additional security measure in this sensitive area.