Lebanon lodges complaint against Israel at UN
BEIRUT (AP) — The Lebanese Foreign Ministry lodged a complaint on Thursday with the U.N. Security Council over this week’s bombardment by Israel of southern Lebanon.
The Israeli artillery shelling was in retaliation to rocket fire launched by militants from villages in south Lebanon, coinciding with an Israeli offensive on Gaza.
Southern Lebanon is a stronghold of the Shiite militant group Hezbollah, which has battled Israel numerous times. However, recent fire from Lebanon has been blamed on other radical factions in the area while Hezbollah apparently has not been involved in the ongoing offensive.
In the complaint filed to the United Nations, the Lebanese Foreign Ministry said Israel’s shelling is a “dangerous” violation of Lebanon’s territorial integrity.
The statement also condemned rocket attacks against Israel from within Lebanese territory, which the ministry says were carried out by “outlaws.” It says the attacks give Israel the motive to attack Lebanese territory and destabilize the region.
Foreign Minister Gibran Bassil blamed unsanctioned elements in Lebanon for the rocket attacks on Israel, while noting that those attacks do not justify Israel’s retaliation.