BEIRUT: Ex-General Security head Jamil al-Sayyed, slammed Wednesday former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan for arguing in his latest book that Lebanon raised the issue of Israel’s occupation of the Shebaa Farms in 2000 as a pretext for Hezbollah to pursue its resistance operations against Israel.
Sayyed said Anan relied on “erroneous facts” provided to him by Israel and U.N. envoy Terje Roed-Larsen.
Sayyed, who was a member of the Lebanese team negotiating the demarcation of the Blue Line, explained that on the eve of Israel’s 2000 withdrawal from south Lebanon, Roed-Larsen opposed Israel’s evacuation of the Shebaa Farms, even after Lebanon presented a map showing that the Farms were located inside Lebanese land.
Sayyed added that Lebanon had received “oral assurances” from Syria that it would sign the map. According to a statement by the former security chief, Roed-Larsen said Israel and the U.N. opposed withdrawal from Shebaa Farms because they fell under the mandate of U.N. forces in the Occupied Syrian Golan heights.
He said Lebanon’s demand that Israel withdraw from the Shebaa Farms at the time had not been a pretext for Hezbollah to continue its operations. “Had Israel and the U.N. approved the map and a withdrawal, we would not be facing the issue of occupation nor its consequences,” Sayyed said.