UNIFIL To Receive A Boost With The Deployment of South Korean Peacekeepers

6 Jul 2007

UNIFIL To Receive A Boost With The Deployment of South Korean Peacekeepers

An advance party of South Korean peacekeepers arrived in southern Lebanon yesterday, ahead of the impending deployment of a South Korean mechanized infantry contingent, to serve as part of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

The rest of the South Korean peacekeepers will arrive sometime at the end of July, and once fully deployed, the unit will have a total of 350 troops. The peacekeepers will be based at Tayr Dibbah, near the city of Tyre.

UNIFIL’s strength now stands at 13,306 peacekeepers. This current total is made up of 11,306 ground troops and 2,000 naval personnel. With the addition of the South Korean peacekeepers, the total strength will rise to 11,656, hailing from a total of 31 countries.

In addition to their core activities focussed on assisting the Lebanese Army in securing stability in southern Lebanon as part of Security Council resolution 1701, UNIFIL peacekeepers continued to provide humanitarian assistance to the local population, including medical, dental and veterinarian aid, as well as educational programmes and de-mining operations.

In June, there were 2,401 instances where UNIFIL peacekeepers provided medical assistance, 174 instances where they provided dental care and 65 occasions on which veterinary services were provided.

UNIFIL de-miners from various national contingents destroyed a total of 373 explosive devices in June.

These include rockets, grenades, cluster bombs, anti-tank and anti-personnel mines. In that same time period, the de-miners cleared 134,251 square metres of explosive devices.

Also in June, UNIFIL`s Maritime Task Force (MTF), in close cooperation with the Lebanese navy, hailed 834 vessels in the maritime area of operations. The MTF is made up of 16 naval vessels from Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Turkey, Denmark and Greece.