Lebanon, Unifil’s committment in spite of attacks

in Defence/Middle East - Africa by

The Lebanon situation is getting worse. Since last September 11, three ambushes hit the Italian military forces engaged in the field. The final, against a patrol of Italian peacekeepers of UNIFIL mission, occurred in the south, on the border with Israel, near the base of Naqoura. During a routine patrol two cars blocked an armored Lynce and exploded several bursts of kalashinikov. The militiamen then looted the vehicle and fled after stealing a machine gun and some bullet-proof jackets. The General Staff of Defense denies any responsibility of IS, who instead claimed the attack in Beirut in which 41 people died of a few days before the terrorist attack against Paris. Lebanese authorities have launched investigations to clarify the sequence of events.

The presence of Shiites of Hezbollah in the territory would preclude any infiltration of Sunni IS or Al Qaida terrorists. Andrea Tenenti, spokesman for the UN force, said that «The investigation is pursuing, and Lebanese authorities join Luciano Portolano, General Commander of UNIFIL, in condemning the ambush». The UN Security Council reiterated its support to UNIFIL, asking to all parties the respect of their obligations to protect security of peacekeepers and of other members of the UN staff. Meanwhile, the Italian contingent continue the activity to contribute to the stability of the country and in favor of local population. During the first month of operation, the “Taurinense” Alpine Brigade has ensured compliance with the UN Resolution 1701, through the continuous control of the territory, and daily committing its structures in joint activities with the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF), both with patrols independent.

In addition to the activities aimed at maintaining the overall balance, the Italian contingent has promoted two new initiatives in high and middle schools of the Al Qulaylah municipality. The Italbatt Task Force led the first lesson of the Italian language course, included in the program of the school year 2015/16, while the medical staff held, on the proposal of the School Director, Mr Abdel Karim Hassan, a lesson in dental awarness.

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