First Published: 2018-03-16

UN chief calls for end to Lebanese 'meddling' in Syria
Antonio Guterres also says he is "concerned" about "almost daily" Israeli overflights of Lebanese territory which violate UN resolutions, Lebanese sovereignty.
Middle East Online

Quarterly report named Lebanon-based, Iran-backed Hezbollah for its involvement in Syrian war.

NEW YORK - United Nations chief Antonio Guteres urged all Lebanese parties to stop meddling in the Syrian conflict, in a report naming the Lebanon-based and Iran-backed Shiite movement Hezbollah.

"The presence of unauthorized weapons in the hands of Hezbollah remains of serious concern and warrants condemnation," the secretary-general said in a quarterly report distributed to the 15 Security Council members ahead of a debate set for Tuesday.

Washington, which is involved in a major diplomatic offensive to counter Iranian influence in the Middle East, is expected to reprise the accusations against Hezbollah.

At the Security Council, Israel's staunch ally the United States is nonetheless limited by Russia, which also holds veto power.

Moscow has recently defended Tehran's maneuvers in Yemen by vetoing a condemnation of the Islamic Republic for allegedly supplying ballistic missiles to Huthi rebels despite an arms embargo.

Moscow questioned the findings by a UN panel of experts that concluded in January that Iran was in violation after determining that missiles fired by the Huthis at Saudi Arabia last year were made in Iran.

Russia said the report did not contain conclusive evidence of Iran's violation of the arms embargo.

On Syria, Gutteres said "no progress was achieved with respect to the disarmament of armed groups."

"The maintenance of arms outside the control of the state by Hezbollah and other groups continues to restrict the ability of the government of Lebanon to exercise full sovereignty and authority over its territory," he added.

"Hezbollah continued to acknowledge publicly that it maintains its military capacity."

Noting that "crises in the region continue to pose a risk to Lebanon's stability," Guterres said he was still "concerned" about "almost daily" Israeli overflights of Lebanese territory in violation of a UN resolution and Lebanese sovereignty.

In the area of operations of the UN's UNIFIL mission in southern Lebanon, involving some 10,500 troops, the situation "remained generally calm."

And the UN chief hailed the mission's increased visibility and activities aimed at halting hostilities.

 

Russia mulls supplying S-300 missile systems to Syria

Morocco, EU start talks on new fisheries deal

Bashir fires Sudan foreign minister

US has 'concerns' about Turkey holding fair vote under state of emergency

Saudi women embrace sports headscarves

FIFA to return to Morocco to check hotels, stadiums

Turkey in shock after violent Istanbul derby

Iraq pays first war reparations to Kuwait since 2014

Fiery kites adopted as new tactic by Gaza protesters

Romanian president slams plan to move Israel embassy

Western strikes on Syria bring no change whatsoever

Trump criticises OPEC for high oil prices

Syria says rebels south of capital surrender

Market has capacity to absorb higher oil prices: Saudi minister

Putin 'ready' for Trump summit

Saudi Arabia to host first public film screening

HRW criticises Lebanon for evicting Syria refugees

Saudi says intercepted ballistic missile from Yemen

Washington: Assad still has 'limited' chemical capability

European MPs urge US not to scrap Iran deal

Oil price soars to highest level in years

Two more pro-Kurdish MPs stripped of Turkey seats

Oil theft 'costing Libya over $750 million annually'

Turkey's snap polls: bold gambit or checkmate for Erdogan?

Iran arrests senior official over public concert

Bahrain sentences 24 to jail, strips citizenship

UN experts urge Iran to cancel Kurd's death sentence

Moderate quake strikes near Iran nuclear power plant

Syria regime forces caught in surprise IS attack

Turkey sentences 18 to life for killing ‘hero’ coup soldier

Exxon faces setback in Iraq as oil and water mix

Libya to clamp down on fuel smuggling

Yemen to arrest colonel for overlooking African migrant rape

Erdogan sends Turkey to snap polls on June 24

Qatar joins Gulf military exercise in apparent compromise

Saudi-Russia oil alliance likely to undercut OPEC

UN in security talks with Syria on chemical probe

Riyadh says two al Qaeda militants killed in Yemen

Record of women candidates in Lebanon, but you can't tell from TV

Sudan protests to UN over Egypt voting in disputed area

Erdogan calls Turkey snap polls for June 24

Rights watchdog say African migrants face rape, torture in Yemen

Nine years since last vote, Lebanon in election fever

Israeli fire neat Gaza border injures five Palestinian

Egypt army says killed jihadist leader in Sinai