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Bolton Statement on Lebanon and Resolution 1559

Statement on Lebanon and Resolution 1559

Statement by Ambassador John R. Bolton, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations
Remarks in Consultations of the Security Council
Washington, DC
October 30, 2006

USUN PRESS RELEASE #308

We welcome the Secretary-General's 4th semi-annual report on the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559 and thank Special Envoy Larsen for his efforts to see that Resolution 1559 is fully implemented.

Resolution 1559, as well as Resolutions 1680 and 1701 and the Ta'if Agreement, clearly shows the international community's commitment to expanding the sovereignty of the democratically-elected Government of Lebanon's over all Lebanon's territory.

We are pleased with the Government of Lebanon's significant progress during this reporting period in deploying the Lebanese Armed Forces in the south of the country for the first time in almost 40 years, as well as the LAF's historic deployment along the eastern part of the Blue Line, as well as along Lebanon's border with Syria.

Despite this advance, we continue to be concerned that Syria and Iran are actively trying to destabilize the democratically-elected Government of Lebanon, in contravention of Resolution 1559's call for strict respect for Lebanon's sovereignty and political independence. We call on Syria and Iran to abide by their obligations to respect Lebanon's sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity, and political independence.

Each UN member state also has an obligation to enforce the arms embargo established by Resolution 1701. Syria's obligations in this regard are particularly important as it is the one country other than Israel that borders Lebanon. Syrian President Assad made a commitment to Secretary-General Annan that Syria would support the implementation of Resolution 1701 and comply with its obligation to enforce the arms embargo; Syria must abide by the promises it made to the Secretary General.

Lebanese civilians will only have lasting security when Hizballah and other militias are disarmed and the democratically-elected Lebanese Government fully expands its sovereignty over all of Lebanon. Any attempt to destabilize Lebanon's democratically-elected government or physically threaten its leaders would be a blatant violation of the spirit of Resolution 1559.

We urge the Secretary-General to maintain the momentum towards implementing resolutions 1559, 1680, and 1701 by reporting to this Council on Syrian and Iranian adherence to the embargo imposed under Resolution 1701 as well as efforts to ensure that Hizballah and other militias inside of Lebanon disarm. Contrary to what is often said, not talking about Hizbollah disarmament may actually weaken the Government of Lebanon.

Released on October 30, 2006

ENDS


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