Saturday, February 15, 2014

New York, 15 February 2014 - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on the formation of new Government in Lebanon

The Secretary-General warmly welcomes today's announcement of the formation of a new Government in Lebanon, and congratulates Prime Minister Tamam Salam on this important step.   
The Secretary-General encourages Lebanon's political leaders to build on the constructive engagement which led to the formation of the new Government to ensure that the country's forthcoming presidential election is successfully conducted within the timeframe set by law.
The Secretary-General pays tribute to outgoing Prime Minister Najib Mikati for his leadership. The United Nations looks forward to working with the new Government in its efforts to serve the people of Lebanon and to ensure the effective implementation of Security Council resolution 1701 and other relevant resolutions which remain essential to the country's stability.
Given the severity of the security, humanitarian and economic challenges facing Lebanon, the Secretary-General emphasises the importance of the Government being able without delay to act effectively to address such challenges with the full support of all parties.

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Security Council, Ban condemn 'heinous' terrorist attack in northern Lebanon

1 February 2014 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Security Council have strongly condemned the "heinous" terrorist attack that took place today in Hermel, Lebanon, a town near the country's northern border, which killed at least four people and wounded dozens of others.

"The members of the Security Council underline the need to bring the perpetrators to justice," the 15-member body said in a press statement issued in New York shortly after the incident, which, according to news reports, was a suicide bomb attack carried out a gas station in the town, which is near Lebanon's northern border with Syria.

In the statement, the Council extended its condolences to the families of the victims and expressed sympathy to all those injured in the heinous act and to the people and Government of Lebanon.

Reaffirming that terrorism constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, Council members also reaffirmed the need to combat the scourge in all its forms and manifestations "by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and all obligations under international law.

Recalling its Presidential Statement of July 10, 2013, the members of the Council appealed to all Lebanese people to preserve national unity in the face of attempts to undermine the country's stability and stressed "the importance for all Lebanese parties to respect Lebanon's policy of disassociation and to refrain from any involvement in the Syrian crisis, consistent with their commitment in the Baabda Declaration."

A statement issued by Mr. Ban's spokesperson in New York echoed the Council's condemnation as well as the 15-member body's call for the "perpetrators of this crime and all other acts of terrorism" to be brought to justice.

"The recent escalation in acts of terrorism and violence in Lebanon is of grave concern," said the statement, adding that Mr. Ban reiterates his call on all Lebanese to rally behind their State institutions, including the army and security forces, as the best means to confront such unacceptable and indiscriminate actions and to safeguard their country's security and stability.

Today's incident was the latest in renewed spate of deadly attacks in Lebanon, the most recent being an explosion in a southern Beirut suburb that killed four people and wounded a number of others on 21 January. That attack was condemned by the Security Council, the Secretary-General and the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Derek Plumbly.

The car bombing, which was the second to strike the suburb of Haret Hreik in January, was "a further deeply disturbing act of indiscriminate terror," the Secretary-General said in a statement on that incident issued by his spokesman.