Report: US Says Aoun's Pro-Hizbullah Stances Could Push Out UNIFILإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Ambassadors of six countries, the United States and the European Union sounded the alarm over President Michel Aoun's latest statements about Hizbullah's arms, amid threats that the UNIFIL could withdraw its peacekeeping mission from south Lebanon, MTV reported on Friday.
A covert meeting was held on February 15 at the United Nations headquarters in Yarze. It included ambassadors of the International Support Group for Lebanon, the US, France, Britain, Germany, Italy and China in addition to the EU ambassador and Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General in Lebanon and Arab League Representative, MTV said.
According to information obtained by MTV, the meeting addressed three main issues: The upcoming parliamentary elections and the new electoral law, the security situation in Lebanon including backing the Lebanese Army, the International Brussels Conference on the Syrian crisis and the Syrian refugees in Lebanon.
On the elections, the conferees emphasized the need to conduct democratic and transparent parliamentary polls. However, they refrained from making a statement in that regard, avoiding interference in Lebanon's affairs, but agreed to have talks with the government to urge staging timely polls, added MTV.
As for supporting the Lebanese army and ensuring a sound security situation, the ambassadors stressed the need to abide by UN resolution 1701 that comprised limiting the presence of arms to the army and providing it with the aid needed in accordance with the resolution.
Talks highlighted the latest statement of Aoun during an official visit to Egypt, which they said does not abide by resolution 1701, but merely reflects visions of a single Lebanese party.
They agreed to have talks with Lebanese defense minister and other officials prompting the need to respect the resolution, since a failed approach affects international assistance for the army mainly from Saudi Arabia and the US.
The Chinese ambassador has pointed out to lack of harmony between the President's stance and the Prime Minister's, said MTV.
The Italian ambassador has however stated that Aoun's rhetoric does not benefit the Lebanese cause.
The US ambassador has however, revealed a tendency to pull the UNIFIL forces from southern Lebanon if the country does not abide by international conventions.
For his part, owing to Aoun's stance, the French ambassador said it is unlikely for a conference to provide Lebanon with the material and moral support in Paris to be held in the next few months, it concluded.