Tripartite Meeting held on 25 November 2015

25 Nov 2015

Tripartite Meeting held on 25 November 2015

The Head of Mission and Force Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), Major-General Luciano Portolano, chaired on Wednesday, 25 November a regular tripartite meeting with senior officers from the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) at the UN Position at Ras Al Naqoura crossing.

The participants discussed issues relevant to the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 1701, including the situation along the Line of Withdrawal (Blue Line), air and ground violations, the ongoing visible marking of the Blue Line and the issue of withdrawal of Israeli forces from northern Ghajar.

UNIFIL Head of Mission Major-General Portolano underlined the continuing constructive engagement of the parties in the discussions and commended their strong support for the work of the Mission.

He noted that the situation along the Blue Line has remained calm despite continued volatility and difficulties in the region: "Today more than ever, it is vital to protect the achievements both parties made with UNIFIL at the tripartite forum. The parties' commitment to the implementation of UNSCR 1701 and your continued cooperation with the Mission have been acknowledged by the UN Secretary-General who has encouraged both parties to take advantage of this window of opportunity presented by the calm along the Blue Line to make the concrete progress on the ground."

Major-General Portolano also emphasized: "With the parties, I have stressed the importance to continue to maintain strong liaison and coordination arrangements with UNIFIL to minimize and halt violations and to further strengthen the security infrastructure we have built together along the Blue Line."

The Force Commander stressed that: "In the recent Security Council discussion, there was a positive recognition of the constructive role played by the tripartite forum in facilitating discussions and preserving stability in UNIFIL's area of operations" adding: "The Secretary-General underlined that UNIFIL liaison and coordination arrangements are a key element in preventing and defusing tensions along the Blue Line, and praised the parties for continuing to make use of them."