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10 July 1987
REPORT OF THE SECRETARY-GENERAL ON THE
UNITED NATIONS INTERIM FORCE IN LEBANON
1. The present addendum brings up to date my report of 17 June 1986 on the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) (S/18164).
Organization of the Force
2. The total strength of UNIFIL, its composition and the deployment of the various contingents are the same as indicated in my report of 17 June 1986 (S/18164, paras. 2-4).
Situation in the UNIFIL area
3. The situation in the UNIFIL area of operation has also remained essentially unchanged since my last report (see S/18164, paras. 12-18). Tension persisted in the "security zone" maintained by Israel in southern Lebanon as Lebanese resistance groups continued their attacks against personnel and positions of the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) and the "South Lebanon Army" (SLA). UNIFIL recorded 27 such attacks since mid-June. There were also reports of attacks in those parts of the "security zone" where UNIFIL is not fully deployed. In its area, UNIFIL has continued its efforts to prevent incidents and reduce the level of violence and to afford protection and humanitarian assistance to the civilian inhabitants.
4. The SLA position east of Yatar remained a major trouble spot and was attacked five times during the period by armed elements. Firing from the position repeatedly forced the closure of the East-West road through Haris, which is an important line of communication for UNIFIL.
5. In the early hours of 21 June, an unidentified person fired a single round at a Nepalese sentry in UNIFIL post 5-12A in Yatar (see map at the end of S/18164). The sentry was seriously wounded in the chest. On 23 June, two military observers from the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) received light injuries when their vehicle set off a mine on the track leading to the SLA position east of Yatar
6. During the night of 9-10 July, there was a serious incident outside the UNIFIL area of deployment, but in the vicinity of the UNIFIL headquarters at Naqoura. An exchange of fire took place near the border crossing at Rosh Hanigra, involving an Israeli patrol boat, IDF personnel stationed on shore and a group of armed infiltrators reported to have come ashore in a rubber dinghy. It was reported that four of the infiltrators had been killed, one had been captured and one was missing and thought to have drowned. Reports further indicate that 2 members of IDF had been killed and 13 others wounded.
7. By section IV of its resolution 40/246 A of 18 December 1985, the General Assembly authorized the Secretary-General to enter into commitments for UNIFIL at a rate not to exceed $11,957,500 gross ($11,762,500 net) per month for the period from 19 April to 18 December 1986 inclusive, should the Security Council decide to continue the Force beyond the period of six months authorized under its resolution 575 (1985), subject to obtaining the prior concurrence of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions for the actual level of commitments to be entered into for each mandate period that might be approved subsequent to 19 April 1986. Should the Council decide to extend UNIFIL beyond its current mandate period, the costs to the United Nations for maintaining the Force during the extension period up to and including 18 December 1986 would be within the commitment authorized by the Assembly in its resolution 40/246 A, assuming continuance of the Force's existing strength and responsibilities.
8. In the event the mandate is extended beyond 18 December 1986, the Secretary-General will report to the Advisory Committee and to the General Assembly during its forty-first session on the additional requirements needed for
maintaining the Force beyond 18 December 1986.
9. My views remain as expressed in the concluding section of my report of 17 June 1986 (S/18164, paras. 21-30).
10. In a letter dated 7 July (S/18202), the Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the United Nations conveyed to me his Government's request that. the mandate of UNIFIL be extended for a further period of six months. The Permanent Representative underlined in his letter his Government's conviction that UNIFIL, symbolizing the will of the international community, remained an indispensable factor for stability in southern Lebanon. As I stated in my last report
(S/18164, para. 27), I share that view. I continue to believe that the international community must maintain the effort to put into effect the solution decided upon by the Security Council in its resolution 425 (1978). UNIFIL is vital to that solution.
11. I therefore recommend that the Security Council should extend the Force's mandate and that the period for such extension should be six months, that is, until 19 January 1987. In making the latter recommendation, I have taken account not only of the clearly expressed wish of the Lebanese Government, but also of the administrative difficulties that result from a mandate period of less than six months.
12. In recommending a further extension of UNIFIL, I must once again draw the Security Council's attention to the financial difficulties faced by the Force. There is, as at the beginning of July 1986, an accumulated shortfall in the UNIFIL Special Account of some $251 million. As a result, the Organization is falling far behind in reimbursements to the troop-contributing countries for the expenses they have incurred in providing troops, equipment and supplies to the Force. I am extremely concerned about this state of affairs, not only because it places an increasingly unfair and heavy burden on the troop-contributing countries, particularly on the less wealthy ones, but also because, if not remedied in time, it could jeopardize the functioning of this important operation and, indeed, its very existence. I therefore strongly appeal to all Member States to pay their assessments without delay. I would like also to appeal to the Governments of the more developed countries to consider making available, as a practical measure, voluntary contributions to the UNIFIL Suspense Account, to be used to reduce the arrears due to the troop-contributing countries.
13. In concluding this report, I wish to express my deep appreciation to the troop-contributing countries for their generous and steadfast support of the Force. I also wish to pay tribute to the Commander of UNIFIL, Major-General Gustav Hagglund, and his staff, civilian and military, and to the officers and men of UNIFIL, as well as to the UNTSO military observers assigned to the area. They have performed their difficult tasks with exemplary dedication and courage.