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UN Force conducts patrols after Israel leaves key area in south Lebanon; provides aid

24 August 2006 United Nations troops in southern Lebanon have set up checkpoints and are conducting intensive patrolling around the area of Bint Jbeil, which saw intensive fighting during the recent month-long conflict, after Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) continued their withdrawal from the south.

The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) will hand over the area to the Lebanese army tomorrow, it said in a press release, adding that the cessation of hostilities continued to hold in the last 24 hours and “no incidents and breaches…or air violations were recorded.”

“UNIFIL continued intensive ground and air patrolling throughout its area of operation to assess the situation on the ground and to monitor the cessation of hostilities.

“The IDF handed over to UNIFIL one Lebanese civilian at the Ras Naqoura crossing yesterday. This move was coordinated with the Lebanese authorities. UNIFIL handed the person over to the Lebanese authorities.”

Continuing its humanitarian work in the south, the interim force also distributed 92,000 litres of drinking water to the villages of Markabe, El Khiam, Raab Ett Tallatine and several others, and also provided medical assistance to the local population.

A team from the Mine Action Coordination Centre is continuing its work to clear the unexploded ordnance that litters the south, performing controlled explosions in the areas of Bint Jbeil, Yohmor, Ras Al Ain, Zawtar West, Deir Al Zahrani, Siddiqin, and Aita Al Jabal.

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