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Danny Gillerman Photo: AP
Danny Gillerman Photo: AP
 
Kofi Annan Photo: AP
Kofi Annan Photo: AP
 
  Photo: Amit Magal

 

Israel to UN: Lebanon declared war

Ambassador to UN Danny Gillerman sends sharp letter to UN blaming Hizbullah attack on Lebanese government, who failed to secure border and disarm the terror group as demanded in UN charter. Rice: Israel has right to defend itself

Yitzhak Benhorin
Published: 07.12.06, 20:49 / Israel News

WASHINGTON - Israel filed a severe complaint to the United Nation Wednesday, which declared Hizbullah's attack on Israel and kidnapping of two IDF soldiers was “an act of war.” Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Danny Gillerman, charged during a press conference that Lebanon has no less than declared war on Israel. With that, Israel has not requested the UN Security Council convene on the issue. Gillerman made the comments shortly after UN Secretary General Kofi Annancriticized Israel’s reprisal activities and demanded the kidnapped soldiers be released.

 

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In a letter to the UN secretary general and the current president of the Security Council Jean-Marc de la Sabliere, Gillerman wrote that the attack was a belligerent act from the sovereign territory of the Lebanese government, an act violating all UN and Security Council decisions.

 

Israelplaced responsibility for the attack on the Lebanese government, from whose territory the attack emanated. The Lebanese government failed to disarm terror organizations acting against Israel, Gillerman wrote, and since this was a belligerent act Israel reserves the right and duty to respond according to the UN charter, he added.

 

Lebanon violated UN charter

 

Gillerman called a press conference, in which he declared that “Today, war was declared on Israel from the northern border,” a declaration of war by Lebanon on the State of Israel, he explained. He added that Israel blamed Lebanon for the incident, as the attack was carried out from its sovereign territory.

 

The UN established that Israel had completely withdrawn from Lebanon, Gillerman pointed out, and ruled that the Lebanese government must exercise its sovereignty and deploy its army along the Israel border to deterHizbullah. The UN charter also demanded Hizbullah be disarmed. “The Lebanese government ignored the UN decisions, and what you see here today is the result,” Gillerman charged. He added that Israel would act in any way possible to defend its borders and return the kidnapped soldiers.

 

The UN ambassador maintained that Israel categorically refused to negotiate with terror organizations, and Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah was recognized as a terrorist whose hands were stained with Israeli blood. “Damascus is the official capital of terrorism,” he added, as it gives refuge to ten of the worst terror organizations.

 

Immediately at the start of Israel incursion into Gaza, a group of Arab countries appealed to the UN to assemble the Security Council to discuss what they termed “Israeli aggression.” But the nations of Europe refuse to address the extremist wording of the Arab requests, and did not even bother to respond. At the moment, Israel had no plans to call for a Security Council assembly to discuss Israel’s operation in Lebanon. 

 

US: Lebanon responsible

 

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora from Paris and pressed him to act for the release of the kidnapped Israeli prisoners. The US supported Israel’s stance, and the White House was preparing to release a statement which will fully lay responsibility on the Lebanese government and Hizbullah. According to the statement, the US supports Israel’s right to defend itself.

 

Washington was trying to unite a front among the industrialized nations, the G8, to demand the Israeli soldiers’ release and call for an immediate halt of terror activities by Hizbullah and Hamas. US Congress was also preparing response statements condemning Hizbullah and laying blame on Lebanon. The agreement in Washington was that Iran most benefits from the situation, which plays into its hands and distracts international attention from their nuclear pursuits. The Syrians, after their humiliation in Lebanon, were also trying to prove that without them, things are more difficult.

 

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