Photo: AP
Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora
Photo: AP
UN Security Council
Photo: Reuters

Lebanon accepts UN resolution

Lebanese government unanimously accepts Security Council Resolution 1701. Siniora: Decision accepted unanimously, with several reservations. Olmert speaks to Bush, thanks him for helping maintain Israel's interests

The Lebanese government on Saturday evening approved the Security Council's Resolution 1701, which calls for a ceasefire and for an end of hostility activities in the country.


Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said that "the decision was accepted unanimously, with several reservations."


Siniora said earlier that the United Nations Security Council's resolution serves his country's interests.


"This resolution shows that the whole world stood by Lebanon ," He told reporters.


Praising Hizbullah guerrillas, the prime minister said: "The steadfastness of the resistance fighters in the field was very important, as was the steadfastness and unity of the people."


"The decision is a victory for the Lebanese diplomacy, in relation to the previous draft presented to us before this decision," he added.


According to Siniora, the Lebanese cabinet will convene Sunday to discuss the operative implementation of the decision.


A Lebanese minister said that the ministers who had reservations over the agreement were Hibzullah's representatives in the government.


According to the minister, "the representatives mainly opposed the part in the decision which acquits Israel of responsibility for the crimes it committed and accuses Hizbullah of the war."


Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah also accepted the UN resolution earlier, saying that "in a situation in which they reach a schedule on halting hostile activities, Hizbullah will stick to it without hesitation. I stress that the resistance is a reaction, and therefore if the Zionist operation stop – we will also stop our operations."


Olmert to Bush: Your declarations strengthened Israel


Since the decision was accepted, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert spoke with a series of state leaders across the world, including the UN secretary-general, the American president, the Russian president, and the Italian prime minister.


The first conversation was with US President George W. Bush. Olmert thanked Bush for the United States' help in maintaining Israel's interests at the Security Council, and stressed that Bush's declarations strengthened Israel.


President Bush, on his part, praised Olmert on his firm stance, adding that he was happy to have such a partner. The American president then sent his condolences to the families of the Israeli casualties, and also spoke to Olmert about the Iranian issue.


Later, the prime minister spoke to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who updated him on the Security Council's decision, and to Russian President Vladimir Putin.


The last conversation was with Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi, who promised that after Israel and Lebanon approve the Security Council's decision, Italy will send soldiers to southern Lebanon. The Italian deputy minister of defense said that Italy had agreed to send 2,000 to 3,000 soldiers to the multinational force which will deploy in Lebanon.


פרסום ראשון: 08.12.06, 22:27
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