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UN: Final Visit To Peacekeepers In Lebanon

Outgoing UN Envoy For Middle East Makes Final Visit To Peacekeepers In Lebanon

The top United Nations envoy in the Middle East has paid a farewell visit to the UN's peacekeeping mission in Lebanon as he gets ready to leave after more than five years in his post.

Terje Roed-Larsen, who has been the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process since September 1999, met General Alain Pellegrini, Commander of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), spokesman Fred Eckhard told reporters today in New York.

Mr. Roed-Larsen also spoke to Lebanon's Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri, who thanked him for his efforts in the region, particularly during the time of Israel's withdrawal from southern Lebanon.

Mr. Roed-Larsen, who completes his service at the end of this year, is now scheduled to travel to Saudi Arabia to hold talks with senior officials from that country.

Last month he became the first UN official to appear before the Israeli Parliament's Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee, where he told lawmakers that there were "potential opportunities" for peace in the troubled region.

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