UNIFIL Head of Mission calls on Speaker Berri & General Kahwaji
The Head of Mission and Force Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), Major-General Luciano Portolano, today met with Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri and the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) Commander, General Jean Kahwaji, in Beirut.
Major-General Portolano briefed the Speaker on the situation along the Blue Line and UNIFIL’s engagement with the people of South Lebanon in efforts, together with LAF, to maintain security and stability in the area within the framework of Security Council resolution 1701 (2006).
Following the meeting with Speaker Berri, the UNIFIL Head of Mission said: “I am ever grateful to the honourable Speaker for his personal attention to UNIFIL’s concerns and his support to our mission in the best interests of the people of the South and the country as a whole. I expressed my deep appreciation for the understanding and support UNIFIL, and I personally, have been receiving from the local institutions and religious leaders. UNIFIL highly values the strong relationship with the local authorities and l look forward to the same level of collaboration with the elected municipal representatives on completion of the ongoing electoral process.”
“I assured the Speaker of UNIFIL’s firm resolve to pursue its mandated tasks, working closely with LAF and other partners on the ground. The results of our combined efforts have been amply evident in the continued overall calm and stability that has prevailed in the area under very challenging circumstances. It is important that we stay the course, and I was very encouraged by the Speaker’s appreciation of this imperative and his expression of Lebanon’s commitment to this shared objective.”
In a separate meeting with LAF Commander General Jean Kahwaji earlier this morning, Major-General Portolano discussed the situation in UNIFIL’s area of operations, collaboration with LAF and issues related to the implementation of UNIFIL’s mandate under resolution 1701 (2006).