Three UN army observers, a Lebanese interpreter wounded in blast whereas patrolling southern border

Three UN army observers, a Lebanese interpreter wounded in blast whereas patrolling southern border

A person visits the United Nations Headquarters as delegates of the Safety Council delated for one further day the vote on a proposal to demand that Israel and Hamas permit help entry to the Gaza Strip by way of land, sea and air routes and arrange U.N. monitoring of the humanitarian help, on the U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., December 20, 2023.  

Eduardo Munoz | Reuters

Three United Nations army observers and a Lebanese interpreter have been wounded Saturday whereas patrolling the southern Lebanese border after a shell exploded close to them, the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Lebanon stated.

The army observers are a part of the United Nations Truce Supervision Group, which helps the UN peacekeeping mission in southern Lebanon, UNIFIL. UNIFIL spokesperson Andrea Tenenti advised The Related Press that the 4 wounded have been in secure situation.

Tenenti stated UNIFIL had knowledgeable all fighters of their patrols as typical and the observers’ automobile was carrying clear UN markings. The three army observers, from Chile, Australia, and Norway, have been unarmed, he stated.

The blast got here as clashes between the Israeli army and Hezbollah militants escalated in latest weeks. Either side have been exchanging hearth for the reason that Israel-Hamas struggle in Gaza broke out, propelling considerations that the near-daily clashes alongside the border may escalate right into a full-scale struggle.

Native Lebanese media, citing safety officers, stated an Israeli drone strike focused the observers within the southern village of Wadi Katmoun close to the border city of Rmeich.

The Israeli army on social media platform X, previously Twitter, stated: “Opposite to the experiences, the IDF didn’t strike a @UNIFIL —automobile within the space of Rmeish this morning.”

Tenenti stated UNIFIL was “investigating the origin of the explosion,” however it was troublesome to place investigators on the bottom instantly due to the continuing change of fireside.

“The concentrating on of peacekeepers is unacceptable,” Tenenti advised The Related Press. “We repeat our name for all actors to stop the present heavy exchanges of fireside earlier than extra individuals are unnecessarily damage.”

Lebanese caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikat condemned the incident in an announcement.

UNIFIL was created to supervise the withdrawal of Israeli troops from southern Lebanon after Israel’s 1978 invasion. The U.N. expanded its mission following the 2006 struggle between Israel and Hezbollah, permitting peacekeepers to deploy alongside the Israeli border to assist the Lebanese army prolong its authority into the nation’s south for the primary time in many years.

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