It sounds promising, but what does the U.N. plan to do differently, when UNIFIL’s presence has had quite the opposite effect from curbing Hizballah in any way? Not much, apparently: Just more talk.
“UN chief: Hizbullah must be disbanded,” from the Associated Press, October 17:
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that Lebanon will not be a fully sovereign state until Hizbullah, and other militia groups are disbanded.
“Hizbullah’s maintenance of separate military assets and infrastructure is a fundamental challenge to the government’s attempts to consolidate the sovereignty and authority of the Lebanese state,” he wrote in a six-month report to the UN Security Council, obtained Thursday by The Associated Press.
“In addition, several Palestinian militias operate in the country, inside and outside of refugee camps,” said the secretary general, adding that they also undermine the stability of the country and the region. […]
The secretary-general said that clashes in May and violent incidents since then raised concerns “that groups on all sides of the political spectrum may be re-arming.”
In the report, Ban called on Lebanese parties to immediately halt all efforts to acquire and build paramilitary capabilities.
He reiterated that disarming and disbanding all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias should be done through a political dialogue “that will lead to the monopoly on the use of force by the government of Lebanon throughout all of its territory.”
“The ultimate purpose of disarmament is the establishment of a strong Lebanese state for all inhabitants of Lebanon,” he said.