Report: UN Chief Emphasizes Commitment to 1559, Russia to 'Keep Hizbullah from Israel Border'إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on the Lebanese to “move towards the full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559,” recalling the Lebanese government's “international commitment to disarm Hizbullah and the rest of the armed groups,” al-Joumhouria daily reported on Friday.
“The participation of Hizbullah and other Lebanese groups in the conflict in Syria violates the international resolution, the Baabda Declaration and the dissociation policy and constitutes a threat to Lebanon's stability,” said Guterres in a semi-annual report to the UN Security Council on the implementation of Resolution 1559.
In the report Guterres emphasized that “the participation of Hizbullah and other Lebanese groups in the conflict in Syria violates the international resolution, the Baabda Declaration and the dissociation policy and constitutes a threat to Lebanon's stability.”
Diplomatic sources who spoke to al-Joumhouria on condition of anonymity commented on Guterres remarks saying that “Lebanon was present at the talks of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoig during his visit to Israel as for Hizbullah's arms and its role in Syria.”
According to Israeli Jerusalem Post “Shoigu told Israel that Moscow has agreed to expand a buffer zone along the Israeli-Syrian border, where Iranian and Hizbullah forces will not be allowed to enter.”
The sources added “Israeli officials told Shoigu that Israel would not distinguish in any future confrontation between the State of Lebanon and Hizbullah and that the contacts it had conducted had not led to a result in terms of restraint of Hizbullah and Iran. They said they took the United States advice in 2006 not to mistaken the Lebanese army with Hizbullah, but that separation would not be respected if there was any confrontation,” in the future.
"Shoigu has asked Israel for self-restraint because Iran and Hizbullah's extension will end oneway or another when the fighting in Syria ends. But the Israeli officials disagreed with the Russian minister and told him they had intelligence reports that the role of Iran and the party would double after the end of the fighting in Syria, and that this is Israel's first concern at the moment,” said the sources.
They added “Russia is taking the Israeli threats seriously this time. The proof is that Shoigu is visiting Israel for the first time despite being defense minister since 2012.”
"The Israeli officials were not comfortable with the outcome of the negotiations because Russia, while understanding Israeli concerns, wants to maintain balanced relations with Syria and Iran, especially since Moscow needs at this stage Iranian human support in Syria," they said.
“The only thing that resulted from the Russian-Israeli talks is an Israeli promise to give a new opportunity for political peace negotiations and a Russian emphasis on working to ensure a safe area for Israel on its borders with Lebanon,” they concluded.