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Lebanon and Israel asked to reduce border tensions

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The flag of Lebanon features the Lebanon cedar.
The flag of Lebanon features the Lebanon cedar.

UN Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix on Saturday urged Lebanon and Israel to de-escalate their border tension.

Lacroix made the call at the end of his four-day visit to Lebanon, according to a statement carried by Lebanon’s National News Agency. “We continue to urge all actors to cease fire, as each day of confrontations increases the risk of a larger and more devastating conflict,” Lacroix said in the statement. The UN peacekeeping chief expressed concern over escalations across the Blue Line, saying, “The conflicts indicate a potential for a wider escalation which must be avoided.” He added that since the exchange of fire began between the two sides, dozens of civilians and journalists have been injured and killed, and the UN peacekeeping mission’s positions in the area have been hit several times, with three peacekeepers injured. Lacroix once again reminded the concerned parties and actors of “their obligation to avoid harm to civilians and UN personnel and premises.” He also urged the conflicting parties to “cease fire, recommit to UN Resolution 1701, and work toward a durable political and diplomatic solution,” stressing that “this is the only way to achieve lasting peace.”

The Lebanon-Israel border has been witnessing increased tension since Oct. 8, 2023, after Lebanese armed group Hezbollah fired dozens of rockets toward Israel in support of a Hamas attack on Israel the previous day, prompting Israel to respond by firing heavy artillery toward southeastern Lebanon.

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