For the fifth consecutive day, Hizbullah terrorists launched attacks against Israel, firing anti-tank rockets and missiles at targets on the Israeli side of the Blue Line. In the course of the fighting, one Israeli soldier was seriously injured.
Today’s assault comes on the heels of several other recent attacks perpetrated by Hizbullah that were referred to in my letter dated 2 April 2002 (A/56/898-S/2002/345). Earlier Hizbullah attacks were detailed in my letters dated 21 March 2002 (A/56/884-S/2002/301), 24 January 2002 (A/56/793-S/2002/115), 17 January 2002 (A/56/778-S/2002/79), 24 October 2001 (A/56/507-S/2001/1012), 5 October 2001 (A/56/443-S/2001/942), 6 July 2001 (A/56/161-S/2001/673), 16 April 2001 (S/2001/367), 16 February 2001 (A/55/792-S/2001/142), 6 February 2001 (A/55/767-S/2001/111), 26 November 2000 (S/2000/1121), 23 October 2000 (S/2000/1011), 19 October 2000 (S/2000/1002) and 7 October 2000 (S/2000/969).
The situation along the Blue Line must be treated as a matter of utmost concern to the international community. Through its recent escalation of attacks, its massive deployment of fighters in close proximity to the Blue Line and the inflammatory and aggressive statements of its leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, Hizbullah is making clear its intent to increase tensions in the area and to ignite a wider regional confrontation. The Security Council has an urgent obligation to bring pressure to bear on the Governments that enable Hizbullah — namely Syria, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Lebanon — and to compel those Governments to abide by their responsibilities under international law and thereby prevent a further grave deterioration in regional security and stability.
The Secretary-General has repeatedly drawn attention to the flagrant violations of the Blue Line committed routinely by Hizbullah terrorists and of the need for the Government of Lebanon to fulfil its responsibilities under Security Council resolutions 425 (1978), 426 (1978), 1310 (2000), 1337 (2001), 1365 (2001) and 1391 (2002), which call for the restoration of effective Lebanese authority in the area. Rather than doing so, the Government of Lebanon has ceded control of the South Lebanon to Hizbullah and permitted the organization to plan and carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli civilian and military targets at will. The Government of Lebanon is also in violation of Security Council resolution 1373 (2001) and the principles of international law, which clearly calls upon all States to refrain from providing any support, whether active or passive, to all persons or entities involved in terrorist acts.
While the Government of Lebanon has permitted Hizbullah to operate freely in the area, it is the Governments of Syria and the Islamic Republic of Iran that provide the organization’s terrorist operatives with the means to do so. The logistical, political and financial support provided by both countries are part and parcel of their lengthy and well-known records of support for terrorist activities.
Israel calls upon the international community to act immediately to prevent a further escalation of the conflict in the Middle East by pressuring the relevant authorities to bring an immediate and complete end to their support and tolerance for Hizbullah’s operations against Israel, which are designed to elevate the Palestinian conflict into a regional confrontation, and undermine any efforts at a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.
I should be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of the present letter circulated as a document of the fifty-sixth session of the General Assembly, under agenda item 166, and of the Security Council.