World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Free, Fair Pres Elections Vital To Lebanon Future

Free and fair presidential elections vital to Lebanon's future - Ban Ki-moon

Security conditions and political stalemate are combining to create a "climate of ongoing crisis" in Lebanon, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon writes in a new report, emphasizing the need to hold free and fair presidential elections next month without any foreign interference.

"There must not be a constitutional void at the level of the presidency, nor two rival governments," Mr. Ban warns in his latest report on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1559, adding that political dialogue must enable the election of a new president before the constitutional deadline of 24 November.

He notes that, for the first time since the end of the country's brutal civil war, the Lebanese people have the opportunity to conduct free and fair presidential elections, "according to Lebanese constitutional rules and without any foreign interference."

"Such an election would signify a major milestone on the road towards the full re-assertion by Lebanon of its sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and political independence, as is the goal of resolution 1559" which was adopted by the Security Council in 2004.

Mr. Ban also expresses his concern at signs that most political parties in Lebanon are apparently preparing for the possible further deterioration of the situation by rearming in contravention to resolution 1559, which calls for their disbandment and disarmament.

Repeating his call on all Lebanese parties to immediately halt all efforts to re-arm and engage in weapons training, he stresses that a return to political dialogue is "absolutely imperative" and the only way to resolve pressing issues.

The Secretary-General states that security conditions have combined with the political stalemate to create "a climate of enduring crisis," hindering the State's ability to extend control over all of its territory and to ensure there are no weapons outside the Government's control.

He notes the recent challenge posed by the Fatah al-Islam group, calling it "a hostile militia that had engaged in terrorist acts in the country," and commends the Lebanese Government and Armed Forces for successfully weathering "a critical test on the road to a truly free and sovereign Lebanon."

Mr. Ban says that foreign involvement in Lebanon has only worsened the crisis. In that context, he reiterates his expectation "vis-à-vis the Syrian Arab Republic, in particular," adding that he expects to see that country's commitment to the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and political independence of Lebanon reflected in "further tangible steps."


More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Covid: 250 Groups Urge WTO Chief To Ditch Pharma-Friendly Approach And Embrace Vaccine Patent Waiver

by Jake Johnson, staff writer An international coalition of 250 civil society groups on Tuesday urged the head of the World Trade Organization to embrace a temporary suspension of coronavirus vaccine-related patents, warning against pursuit of a voluntary ... More>>

Samoa’s Stunning Election Result: On The Verge Of A New Ruling Party For The First Time In 40 Years

Tamasailau Suaalii Sauni , University of Auckland and Patricia A. O'Brien , Georgetown University Samoan politics is on a knife edge. After the country voted in general elections on April 9, counting so far has resulted in a dead heat between the two ... More>>

Timor-Leste: UN Agencies Support Response In Wake Of Deadly Floods

United Nations agencies in Timor-Leste are supporting response efforts, as floods and landslides left widespread damage across the country, including in the capital, Dili. According to media reports, at least 21 people died in the country and many ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Awake At Night: S3-Episode 21: There Is Hope

Brazzaville visit to CSI Pilote du Diabete with Health workers at a local government clinic. 2018 - Photo: ©CSI/Dr. Soumya Swaminathan 'When it comes to a pandemic, it really needs global collaboration and solidarity because the pathogens and viruses More>>

UN: Growing Calls For Revamping Development Financing To Ensure Sustainable Global Recovery From COVID-19 Pandemic

Forum to highlight new initiatives to tackle inequalities exacerbated by pandemic With many economies reeling as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and as inequalities continue to widen, world leaders will discuss options to unlock concrete investments ... More>>

How Can We Vaccinate The World? Five Challenges Facing The UN-Backed COVAX Programme

The aim of the UN-backed COVAX scheme is to get two billion vaccine doses into the arms of around a quarter of the population of poorer countries by the end of 2021. What are the main challenges that need to be overcome, if this historic global effort ... More>>