Force Commander stresses to Lebanese officials urgency of probe into attack on UNIFIL
(30 May 2011, UNIFIL Force Commander statement on his meetings with Lebanese officials)
UNIFIL Force Commander Major-General Alberto Asarta Cuevas held separate meetings in Beirut today [Monday] with Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, and Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) Commander General Jean Kahwaji.
The Force Commander thanked the Lebanese authorities for their strong statements of support for UNIFIL and condemnation of the despicable attack against the peacekeepers. He expressed his deepest appreciation for the strong solidarity and support of the LAF following the attack and the care extended to the six injured peacekeepers by the medical team at the Hammoud Hospital in Saida.
Major-General Asarta reassured the officials that UNIFIL will stay the course and stressed the importance of completing the investigation with utmost urgency.
After the meeting, the Force Commander said: "We had very good meetings. I was heartened by the strong voices of support reiterated by the leaders and a common resolve to bring the perpetrators of this attack to justice."
"UNIFIL peacekeepers remain determined more than ever to pursue our mandated tasks with greater vigour. We will not allow this incident to interrupt our operations on the ground which are continuing in full measure in cooperation with the LAF," he added.
"I was assured that the Lebanese authorities and the people at large share the same determination towards the continued implementation of UN Security Council resolution 1701 and we agreed that to this end security and safety of UNIFIL peacekeepers is vital," Major-General Asarta said.