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16 December 1988
Agenda item 40
THE SITUATION IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Letter dated 16 December 1988 from the Permanent Representative of Lebanon
to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General
On instructions from my Government, I have the honour to inform you that, on the morning of Thursday, 15 December 1988, 10 Israeli intelligence agents entered the village of Tebnin, situated outside the so-called "security zone" which Israel continues to occupy inside Lebanese territory, arrested four Lebanese and abducted them into the zone.
This Israeli operation angered some of the villagers, who proceeded to detain four members of the Irish contingent of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) based at Tebnin. The villagers then quickly released them.
The Lebanese Government regrets this detention incident, which was caused by Israel's policy of provocation and escalation in southern Lebanon. It affirms its support for UNIFIL and its appreciation of the positive and effective role played by the Force. It also reiterates its request that the Security Council should enable UNIFIL to carry out the tasks entrusted to it under Security Council resolutions 425 (1978) and 426 (1978) and under subsequent pertinent resolutions calling for Israel's complete, immediate and unconditional withdrawal from Lebanese territory
The Lebanese Government calls upon the Security Council to exert pressure on Israel to release those Lebanese who were abducted and to halt its illegal and irresponsible practices, which from time to time have negative repercussions for UNIFIL and its members.
The Lebanese Government reserves its right to call for a meeting of the Security Council when it deems the time appropriate.
I should be grateful if you would have this letter circulated as an official document of the General Assembly, under agenda item 40, and of the Security Council.
) Rachid FAKHOURY