UNIFIL Mission Profile

16 Oct 2017

UNIFIL Mission Profile

In 2006, under Security Council Resolution 1701, UNIFIL witnessed a substantial increase in its troops and responsibilities across its area of operations between the Litani River and the Blue Line. Monitoring the cessation of hostilities and supporting the Lebanese Armed Forces constitute the core of UNIFIL’s work and so each day, UNIFIL peacekeepers, drawn from 41 countries, patrol the south in vehicles, on foot and from the air.

UNIFIL achieves its mandate of maintaining security and stability throughout south Lebanon through comprehensive liaison and coordination arrangements, as well as the tripartite mechanism which enjoys full and active participation of both parties: Israel and Lebanon.

UNIFIL and the Lebanese Army routinely join forces to conduct foot and vehicle patrols. Working in conjunction and close coordination with the Lebanese Armed Forces as well as the strong commitment of the parties to the cessation of hostilities have resulted in unprecedented calm in southern Lebanon.

The visible marking of the 120 km line of withdrawal or Blue Line is an important mechanism that prevents frictions and misunderstandings. The blue barrels also directly contribute to the security of the people living on both sides of the Blue Line by preventing inadvertent crossing. UNIFIL specialists oversee the entire process, which started in 2007. In the marking process each point on the Blue Line must be agreed by both parties, before a Blue Line barrel goes up.

UNIFIL concentrates its demining efforts in certain areas along the Blue Line to facilitate safe access for the ongoing Blue Line marking process. Since the end of the 2006 conflict, UNIFIL has also assisted the Lebanese Mine Action Center in clearing vast areas of southern Lebanon of cluster bombs and unexploded ordinance, restoring land and safety to the people of the south.

UNIFIL’s Maritime Task Force, the first and only naval operation in United Nations peacekeeping history, has been patrolling 200 kilometers of Lebanese coast line since October 2006. These naval peacekeepers assist the Lebanese Navy in its efforts to prevent the unauthorized entry of illegal arms or related material by sea into Lebanon. Through joint training, UNIFIL MTF also works to strengthen the Lebanese Navy’s capabilities to resume effective security control over Lebanese territorial waters.

Daily air operations are essential in providing UNIFIL with a unique vantage point over its vast area of operations, giving the mission an invaluable tool for patrolling and observation not to mention transport and emergency evacuations.

UNIFIL troops live and work closely with the communities living in Southern Lebanon. This close relationship has led to countless humanitarian initiatives which have directly benefited the people of the south.

A range of services utilizing UNIFIL skills and resources are extended to the residents of south Lebanon, and include UNIFIL hospitals that are open to the people, as well as educational and livelihood workshops and village visits by UNIFIL vets.

The result is thousands of patients have received medical care, thousands have received training in languages, computers and other skills and tens of thousands of farm animals have been treated.

As each day draws to a close UNIFIL sets out on patrols that run through the night, maintaining a secure presence across the area of operations.

UNIFIL has a mandate and responsibility to monitor the cessation of hostilities and help the Lebanese Army maintain security in Southern Lebanon and it works tirelessly to do so.

 

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Video Camera: Mohamad Hamze & Aoibheann O’Sullivan
Video Editors & Voice Over: Suzane Badereddine & Aoibheann O’Sullivan
Infographic: Zeina Ezzeddine
Photo: Pascual Gorriz

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