Report: Lebanon Refused Opening Qulaiat Airport for Syria Observersإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Lebanese authorities have refused to allow U.N. observers to land in the defunct Qulaiat airport in the North to give them quick access to the Syrian province of Homs, An Nahar daily reported Wednesday.
The newspaper said the U.N. made the request given that the airport is at close proximity to Homs and could be used for the possible evacuation of casualties.
An advance team of six members already arrived in Syria and is preparing for the deployment of a 30-person mission in accordance with a U.N. Security Council resolution which also calls upon the Syrian government to "implement visibly" all commitments under special envoy Kofi Annan's peace plan -- including the withdrawal of all troops and heavy guns from Syrian cities.
A new resolution with a full mandate will be required for the full monitoring mission of more than 200 observers.
The Lebanese decision to refuse the international request came over fears that the Qulaiat airport could be used as a “humanitarian corridor” to aid those in need in Syria, which Lebanon had rejected as part of its policy in distancing itself from the Syrian crisis, An Nahar said.
The last time the government discussed the possible operation of the airport came after Tourism Minister Fadi Abboud called for activating the tourism sector across Lebanon.