Irish members of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force sit on their armored vehicles in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights as they wait to cross into the Syrian-controlled territory August 28, 2014. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
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Militants fighting the Syrian army have detained 43 U.N. peacekeepers in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and trapped another 81 in the region as the world body works to secure their release, the United Nations said on Thursday.The affected peacekeepers are from the Philippines and Fiji, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters. It added that another 81 UNDOF peacekeepers were being restricted to their positions in the vicinity of Ar Ruwayhinah and Burayqah.Britain's U.N. Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant, president of the Security Council this month, told reporters the trapped peacekeepers were surrounded by Islamist militants.The United Nations said this week that the Philippines has decided to pull out of UNDOF, and from a U.N. force in Liberia, which is struggling with an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus.
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