A special mandate of a 10,500-strong U.N. peacekeeping force has been put into action in southern Lebanon. Known as United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, the United Security Council has felt compelled to vote towards the renewal of this special long-running peacekeeping mission in Lebanon. The intent to keep in alive till the end of August 2020.
The council has reasons to have given out a warning signal of a possible “new conflict” with neighboring Israel as tensions with the Hezbollah terror group spiked over the last few days.
Confirmed reports have shared that an alleged Israeli drone crashed in a Hezbollah stronghold in southern Beirut recently. This resulted in Lebanese army gunners firing back at Israeli reconnaissance drones flying in Lebanese airspace- all of which has heightened tensions between the two countries. Apparently, both countries have violated the Blue Line both by air and ground and the UN Council has condemned this by “strongly calling upon all parties to respect the cessation of hostilities.”
The Blue Line was a fictitious but unanimously decided line of division between Israel and Lebanon drawn in by the United Nations after 2000. The United Nations cartographer and his team, assisted by UNIFIL, worked on the ground to identify a line to be adopted for the practical purposes of confirming the Israeli withdrawal.
While it was agreed that this would not be a formal border demarcation, the aim was to identify a line on the ground closely conforming to the internationally recognized boundaries of Lebanon.
The UN deployed forces will be following the Blue Helmet strategy and mandate under which, these forces are meant to protect populations against threats and contributing to a secure environment.
The draft resolution, written by France and approved unanimously, reiterates the council’s urgent call for Israel and Lebanon to support a ‘permanent cease-fire and for the accelerated deployment of Lebanese forces in the South and the country’s territorial waters.’
The council’s move is looking important as it means, this will help solve the crises at hand peacefully, as both sides are in no position to handle another eminent war.