Security Council ‘Deplores’ Lebanon Border Shooting

December 16, 2013  

The United Nations Security Council on Monday “deplored” the killing of an Israeli soldier in a cross-border shooting and called for moves to ease tensions with Lebanon, AFP reports.

A statement agreed by the 15-nation body welcomed action already taken to investigate the killing on Sunday, which Israel has blamed on Lebanese troops.

The Security Council “deplored the shooting of an Israel Defense Forces soldier by a Lebanese Armed Forces soldier” and “called for calm and continued restraint by all parties,” according to AFP.

The UN peacekeeping force in south Lebanon said earlier that the killing of Israeli soldier Shlomi Cohen as he drove near the unofficial border appeared to be “an individual action.”

The Security Council welcomed statements by the two sides “of their interest in preserving calm and stability” along the border.

The Lebanese army has said that the incident “was a result of an individual act by one of the soldiers.” It added that a military committee is investigating the issue.

Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati also said that the incident, near Rosh Hanikra was “an isolated incident of limited scope.”

UN leader Ban Ki-moon has already called for restraint by Israel and Lebanon. A UN force has patrolled their border area since a the 2006 Second Lebanon War.

Israel filed a protest with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) over the incident which it described as an “outrageous breach” of its sovereignty, and the IDF said it had “heightened its state of preparedness” and would maintain its “right to exercise self-defense”.

Lebanese media reported that the unnamed attacker turned himself in Monday morning, after spending the night hiding in nearby woodlands.

Sunday night’s incident took place three days after an IDF patrol came under fire in the northern Galilee, near the border with Lebanon. The soldiers returned fire.

No IDF soldiers were hurt in that incident.

In August of 2010, IDF Lt.-Col. (res.) Dov Harari, a battalion commander, was killed, and Captain (res.) Ezra Lakia was badly hurt, in an exchange of fire between Lebanon Army and IDF forces. 

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