On 27 August 2009 the United Nations Security Council unanimously approved resolution 1884 which renews UNIFIL’s mandate until 31 August 2010. This resolution underlines the support of the international community to UNIFIL and its role in preserving stability in the region. Its solid and robust mandate remains unchanged.
The French Minister of Foreign Affairs made the following statement on 28 August 2009 : "France welcomes the unanimous adoption by the Security Council yesterday of resolution 1884, which renews the mandate of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) for one year. As part of the tasks assigned to it by resolution 1701 (2006), UNIFIL plays a decisive role in the stability of Lebanon and the enforcement of a cease-fire with Israel. We are very satisfied that the current robust mandate for UNIFIL was renewed by the Security Council. Alongside other peacekeepers, French soldiers provide on the field a decisive contribution to the accomplishment of UNIFIL’s mandate."
Lebanon joined the Security Council on 1 January 2010 for two years as an elected member.
On 27 January 2010, the Security Council met for its quarterly public debate on the Middle East. The permanent representative of France began his statement with the situation in Lebanon. He insisted in particular on the need for full implementation of resolution 1701 and, in this respect, called on the continuation of contacts between the UN and Israel over the issue of Ghajar: an Israeli withdrawal from Ghajar "would contribute to the easing of tensions in this area. "
On 9 July 2010, the Security Council met in consultations on the initiative of France, following a series of incidents which occurred a few days earlier between UNIFIL and the local population. A press statement by the Security Council, prepared by France, was adopted and read out the president of the Security Council :
"The members of the Security Council commend the active role of UNIFIL in ensuring the implementation of Security Council resolution 1701. The members of the Security Council strongly deplore the recent incidents involving UNIFIL peacekeepers which took place in southern Lebanon on June 29th, July 3rd and July 4th in the UNIFIL area of operation. The members of the Security Council welcome the fact that, in its statement of July 8th, the government of Lebanon deplored the above mentioned incidents, reaffirmed its commitment to UNIFIL as well as to the full implementation of R. 1701.
"In this regard, the members of the Security Council emphasize the importance of not impairing the ability of UNIFIL to fulfill its mandate under Security Council resolution 1701. They call on all parties to ensure that the freedom of movement of UNIFIL remains respected in conformity with its mandate and its rules of engagement. The members of the Security Council also call on all parties to abide scrupulously by their obligation to respect the safety of UNIFIL and other United Nations personnel.
"The members of the Security Council call for continued reinforcement of the cooperation between the Lebanese Armed Forces and UNIFIL. The members of the Security Council stress the importance of increasing the Lebanese Armed Forces deployed in Southern Lebanon, consistent with resolution 1701.
"The members of the Security Council reiterate their full support for UNIFIL and call on all parties to cooperate with the mission in order to fully implement resolution 1701."
Following the consultations, the French Permanent Representative made remarks to the press.
On 3 August 2010, following a serious border incident between the Israeli and Lebanese armies that resulted in the death of several persons, the Security Council met in consultations in the presence of Alain Le Roy, Under Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations and General Asarta, Commander of UNIFIL.
In a statement to the press, the Security Council members expressed their deep concern and called in particular on all parties to exercise the utmost restraint, strictly abide by their obligations under resolution 1701 and to strengthen their cooperation with UNIFIL.
On 30 August 2010, the Security Council adopted resolution 1937 renewing without changes the mandate of UNIFIL (as described in resolution 1701), until 31 August 2011.
The resolution conveys several important messages to the parties:
— The Security Council expresses its deep concern with regard to the incidents in July and August;
— The resolution recalls that all parties concerned must respect resolution 1701 and the Blue Line in its entirety and encourage the parties to accelerate their efforts in coordination with UNIFIL to visibly mark the Blue Line;
— It demands that the freedom of movement of UNIFIL be fully respected;
— The Security Council calls on Israel to withdraw from North Ghajar and thereby complete its withdrawal from Lebanon;
— The resolution clearly reaffirms the Council’s call for the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani River of an area free of any armed personnel, assets, and weapons other than those of the Government of Lebanon and UNIFIL;
— The Council asks the Lebanese Army to continue to strengthen its presence south of the Litani River under resolution 1701. The presence of Lebanese Armed Forces along with UNIFIL and both parties’ effective coordination will ultimately facilitate the transfer of tasks performed by peacekeepers to the Lebanese military.
France hopes that Israel and Lebanon take into account these messages and make progress in the implementation of resolution 1701, which guarantees the stability of this area.
On 18 October 2010, the Security Council met for its quarterly public debate on the Middle East. On the situation in Lebanon, the Permanent Representative of France all parties to implement resolution 1701 and to ensure full respect for the Blue Line. On this occasion, he also stressed the necessary independence of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and insisted that no one should prejudge the outcome of its work or try to interfere with it. Finally, he regretted the remarks by the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran during his visit to Lebanon in October 2010 that called into question the existence of Israel.
On 28 October 2010, the Security Council met in private consultations for its six-monthly examination of the implementation of resolution 1559. On the same day, the spokesman of the Quai d’Orsay in Paris made the following comments concerning the incident directed at inspectors of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon: "Attempts to restrict the work of the STL are not acceptable. We condemn them in the strongest terms. As reiterated by the STL in a statement yesterday, such intimidation will not stop the court from accomplishing its mission."
On 5 November 2010, the Security Council met in private consultations. The president of the Security Council made the following statement after the meeting:
"Under ‘Any Other Business’ members of the Council were briefed by Ms Patricia O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Counsel, on the attack on members of the investigation team from the Office of the Prosecutor of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon in Beirut on 27 October 2010.
"Ms O’Brien noted that the agreement between the government of Lebanon and the United Nations to establish the Special Tribunal for Lebanon was brought into force by Security Council Resolution 1757 in 2007. Ms O’Brien recalled the statement issued by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in support of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and the statements of the President of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon Antonio Cassese and the Office of the Prosecutor on the incident on 27 October.
"She informed the Council that Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Prime Minister Hariri of Lebanon had discussed these issues on 29 October 2010. The Secretary-General reiterated his deep concern over recent statements and events related to the work of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and called on all parties to cooperate fully with the Tribunal. Prime Minister Hariri reaffirmed to the Secretary-General Lebanon’s commitment to international law and to safeguarding the integrity of the investigation and the requirements of justice.
"The Permanent Representative of Lebanon, Ambassador Nawaf Salam, informed the Council that Lebanon had initiated a judicial investigation into the matter."
After this statement, the permanent representative of France, Ambassador Gérard Araud, made remarks to the press.
On 19 January 2011, at the quarterly public debate on the situation in the Middle East, the Permanent Representative of France, following the report submitted by Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs Lynn Pascoe, underscored France’s support to the Lebanese authorities and the importance of the implementation of the Taif agreement, in particular as Lebanon was experiencing a political crisis after the resignation of part of its government. Two days before, Prosecutor Bellemare of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon had filed an indictment in connection with the investigation on the assassination of Rafik Hariri. France expressed its full support to the Tribunal and its rejection of any political instrumentalisation of its activity.
On 21 April 2011, the Security Council met for its quarterly public debate on the Middle East. On the situation in Lebanon, the Permanent Representative of France called on all parties to exercise the utmost restraint and to continue to cooperate in the Tripartite Commission. He also urged the Lebanese authorities to respect all the country’s international obligations, in particular those related to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and resolution 1701.
On 26 July 2011, the Security Council met for its quarterly public debate on the situation in the Middle East with representatives of Palestine and Israel. In his statement, the Permanent Representative of France referred to the situation in Lebanon. "In Lebanon, the events at the border have raised concerns in the international community. We condemn the attack against UNIFIL which occurred on 27 May and the one a few hours ago against the French contingent. In this context, France calls on all parties to respect their obligations under Resolution 1701. The formation of the Lebanese government by Prime Minister Najib Mikati is a significant step for Lebanon and the Lebanese. It is essential that the government continues the implementation of the international obligations and commitments of Lebanon, in particular with regard to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and its financing, in accordance with resolution 1757 and the commitments made by the Lebanese prime minister. "
On 30 August 2011, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2004, renewing the mandate of UNIFIL for one year.
On 24 October 2011, during an open debate of the Security Council on the situation in the Middle East, the Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr Lynn Pascoe, noticed that no major incident had occurred in the area of deployment of UNIFIL since September 2011.
The Permanent Representative of France urged the Lebanese government to respect its international commitments especially those from Resolution 1701 and pushed for all sides to cooperate and refrain from using violence.
On 27 October, 2011, the Security Council met in closed consultations in order to hear the report of the Special Envoy to Lebanon, Terje Roed Larsen. France expressed its concerns over the impact of the repression led by the Syrian authorities on both the regional and Lebanon’s stability. France called for the end of violence and an action from the Council in this regard, requesting the acceleration in the implementation of resolution 1559.
On 29 November 2011, the Security Council met in closed consultations to hear reports by Oscar Fernandez Taranco, Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs, and Edmond Mulet, Assistant Secretary General for peacekeeping operations.
The Representative of France condemned the firing of rockets on the night of 29 November, calling on all sides to show restraint, and urging them to implement the recommendations of UNIFIL. He reiterated France’s support to UNIFIL, commending the resumption of the Blue Line’s marking.
On 9 December 2011, following a roadside bomb attack against French troops of UNIFIL, Security council members adopted the following statement :
The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attack against a United Nations Interim force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) convoy near Tyre, Lebanon, on 9 December, which injured five United Nations peacekeepers of the French battalion and two civilians. The members of the Security Council expressed their sympathy to the injured and their families.
The members of the Security Council noted the commitment of Lebanon to launch an investigation, to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack and to protect UNIFIL movements. In this regard, they also called for enhanced cooperation between the Lebanese Armed Forces and UNIFIL and for the rapid finalization of this investigation.
The members of the Security Council condemned all attempts to threaten the security and stability of Lebanon, and reaffirmed their determination to ensure that no such acts of intimidation will prevent UNIFIL from implementing its mandate in accordance with Security Council resolution 1701 (2006).
The members of the Security Council called on all parties to abide scrupulously by their obligation to respect the safety of UNIFIL and other United Nations personnel, and to ensure that the freedom of movement of UNIFIL is fully respected, in conformity with its mandate and rules of engagement.
In this regard, the members of Security Council reaffirmed their full support to UNIFIL and expressed their strong appreciation to Member States contributing troops.
On 8 February 2012, the United Nations Secretary General briefed the Security Council gathered in closed consultations on his recent visit in the region.
On 21 March 2012, the Security Council heard in private consultations the report of the newly appointed United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Derek Plumbly, on the implementation of resolution 1701.
The representative of France underlined the consequences of the Syrian crisis on the stability of Lebanon and the many cases of repeated limitation of freedom of movement of UNIFIL, in which France would continue to contribute up to a thousand men.
On 8 May 2012, the Security Council met behind closed doors to examine the evolution of the regime of sanctions established by resolution 1559. Despite the limited progress observed in the implementation of the regime, especially in light of the repeated violations of Lebanese territorial sovereignty over the past six months, special envoy Roed-Larsen, described a relatively stable domestic situation.
The representative of France emphasized the threat caused by the Syrian crisis on Lebanese territorial sovereignty and integrity and restated the importance of reinforcing the implementation of resolution 1559, through clear demarcation of the Syro-lebanese border, disarmament of armed militias and also through the respect of Lebanese sovereignty by Israel.
On 19 June 2012, the Security Council met to hear the briefing of Mr Oscar Fernandez Taranco, Assistant Secretary General on the situation in the Middle East. He expressed his concern vis à vis the repercussions of the Syrian conflict on the security situation in Lebanon.
In closed consultations, the representative of France expressed his support to the Lebanese president for his efforts to restore national dialogue.
On 17 July 2012, the Security Council Members have been briefed by the Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Mr. Derek Plumbly, following the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1701 .
The Security Council welcomed the stability that continues to prevail across the Blue Line and in UNIFIL’s area of operations. Nonetheless, the briefer stressed the necessity to help Lebanon to preserve its territorial sovereignty. The Security Council adopted a press statement expressing this concern.
The French Representative condemned recent incursions on the Lebanese-Syrian border and welcomed the transfer on 11 July by the Government of Lebanon of its annual contribution to the budget of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.
On 23 August 2012, the UNSC met in private consultations on the situation in Lebanon. Edmond Mullet reported that crisis in Syria had an impact on the ongoing joint operational activities between LAF and UNIFIL due to the reallocation of Lebanese troops to the Syrian border area. He stressed that the freedom of movement of UNIFIL personnel, who had recently been under attack by unidentified civilians, should be respected. The French Representative called all parties to respect resolution 1701, in light of the reported recent arms smuggling activities to Syria
On 30 August 2012, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2064, extending for a year the mandate of the UNIFIL.
On 19 October 2012, reacting to a terrorist attack in Beirut which resulted in the death and injury of several persons, the Security Council adopted the following press statement :
The members of the Security Council strongly condemned the terrorist attack on 19 October 2012 in Beirut, which killed Brigadier General Wissam al-Hassan, Interior Security Forces Information Branch Chief, and caused numerous deaths and injuries, including among civilians. The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims of this heinous act and to the people and Government of Lebanon.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed. The members of the Security Council reiterated their determination to combat all forms of terrorism, in accordance with its responsibilities under the Charter of the United Nations.
The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring the perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of this crime to justice, expressed their determination to support the efforts and the commitment of the Government of Lebanon to this end and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Lebanese authorities in this regard. They also recalled the need to put an end to impunity in Lebanon.
The members of the Security Council reiterated their unequivocal condemnation of any attempt to destabilize Lebanon through political assassinations and demanded an immediate end to the use of intimidation and violence against political figures. They appealed to all Lebanese people to preserve national unity in THE face of such attempts to undermine the country’s stability and called upon all Lebanese parties to continue engaging in the National Dialogue reconvened under the authority of President Sleiman to this effect.
The members of the Security Council underlined the importance of full respect for Lebanon’s sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity and the authority of the Lebanese State in accordance with Security Council resolutions.
On 9 November 2012, the Security Council met in closed consultations with the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General, Mr. Terje Roed-Larsen, to analyze the situation in Lebanon and the implementation of resolution 1559, in particular following the murderous attack against the head of the information section of the internal security forces.
France expressed its strong concern over risks of spill over of the Syrian crisis and the operations carried out to destabilize Lebanon. All had to be done to preserve Lebanon’s hard won sovereignty.
On 29 November 2012, the Security Council met in closed consultations with Mr. Terje Roed-Larsen, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General and Mr. Edmond Mulet, Assistant Secretary General for peacekeeping operations, to analyze the implementation of resolution 1701.
France reiterated its support to the territorial integrity and the sovereignty of Lebanon, which were threatened by the consequences of the Syrian crisis. Lebanon’s neutrality had to be respected; however its authorities had to exercise their full control over their territory. The close cooperation between the Lebanese armed Forces and UNIFIL was necessary to pursue the strategic dialogue.
On 14 March 2013, the Security Council held closed consultations to hear Mr Derek Plumbly, United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon, presenting the final report on the implementation of resolution 1701. Mrs Izumi Nakamitsu, Director of the Africa and Middle East Division at the Department of Peackeeping Operations, focused on UNIFIL mandate and its cooperation with Lebanese Armed forces (LAF).
While the calm continued to prevail in UNIFIL area of operations, the representative of France urged all parties to pursue the implementation of resolution 1701 in order to ensure a lasting cessation of hostilities with Israel. However, the impact of the Syrian crisis on Lebanon’s stability was a serious matter of concern, especially because of the increasing flow of Syrian refugees, now exceeding 360.000 people.
After the session, the Security Council adopted a press statement supporting all efforts made to preserve the unity and stability of Lebanon.
On 8 May 2013, while briefing the Security Council behind closed doors, Mr Roed-Larsen, Secretary-General Special Envoy for Lebanon, regretted the lack of significant steps in the implementation of resolution 1559.
The representative of France expressed grave concerns on the consequences of the Syrian crisis on Lebanon’s stability, especially the threat posed by the influx of Syrian refugees. The Security Council had to support the Lebanese Armed Forces to guarantee the dissociation policy of President Sleiman.
On 25 June 2013, Mr. Oscar Fernandez-Tarranco, Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs, presented to the Security Council the Secretariat’s monthly report on the situation in the Middle East. He particularly emphasized the destabilizing effects of the crisis in Syria on the internal situation of Lebanon.
During the following private consultations, the representative of France stressed the need for a collective support to institutions of the Lebanese State, key to the stability of the country, and to the respect of the policy of dissociation, as recalled by President Suleiman to all parties.
The 9 July 2013, the Security Council met in closed session to hear MM. Plumbly, Special Envoy for Lebanon, and Ladsous, Under Secretary General for peacekeeping Operations, present situation in the country and in the area of deployment of UNIFIL. On this occasion, the Council members agreed on a presidential statement, initiated by France, reaffirming their support to the policy of dissociation from the Syrian conflict led by the Lebanese authorities. The Representative of France made remarks to the press on that matter.
The Council also adopted a statement to the press condemning the attacks that struck Beirut that same day.
On 15 August 2013, the Security Council issued a press statement condemning the terrorist attack that occurred in South Beirut, which killed at least 10 people and wounded more than 100.
On 20 August 2013, Mr. Oscar Fernandez Taranco, Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, presented his report on the situation in the Middle East to the members of the Security Council. He described the recent attacks in Roueiss, which killed 24 people and injured more than 300 others, as the deadliest attacks in the country since 2005. He expressed his deep concern over the number of foiled attacks in Lebanon within the past few months, reflecting a volatile security situation.
During the consultations that followed, the representative of France stressed the importance for all Lebanese parties to respect the Baabda agreements and Lebanon’s policy of disassociation defended by President Sleimane. He also called for the mobilization of the international community to increase its assistance to Lebanon, which now hosts more than one million Syrian refugees. Finally, he said that France would fully support all the steps that would ensure the cohesion of the Lebanese population, foster dialogue, and the formation of a new government and the holding of parliamentary elections.
On 22 August 2013, the Security Council met in closed consultations to hear the report of Mr. Edmond Mulet, Assistant Secretary-General for peacekeeping operations, on the situation in Lebanon and UNIFIL activities. During his intervention, Mr. Mulet underlined the continued violations of resolution 1701 by Israel and some Lebanese groups.
During these consultations, the representative of France deplored the violations of the Lebanese airspace by Israeli forces. He also condemned the rockets targeting Israel that were launched in the morning, which he described as unacceptable. He said the involvement of Hezbollah in the Syrian conflict seriously undermined the stability of the country. He called on all Lebanese parties to support the policy of dissociation defended by President Sleimane.
The representative of France also highlighted the essential role of UNIFIL in maintaining peace and stability in Lebanon and announced France would circulate a draft resolution to allow the renewing of the mandate of UNIFIL.
On 29 August 2013 the United Nations Security Council unanimously approved resolution 2115 which renews UNIFIL’s mandate until 31 August 2014.
On 22 October 2013, the Security Council met for its quarterly public debate on the Middle East, with Mr. Jeffrey Feltman, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr. Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN, and Mr. Ron Prosor, Permanent Representative of Israel.
The Representative of France called on the international community to increase its assistance to Lebanon, which is now hosting over 1.5 Syrian refugees and face increased security challenges, as well as a political, institutional and economic crisis. Finally, he welcomed the launch of the International Support Group for Lebanon, arguing that it was essential to continue the mobilization to help the country to face this global crisis.