Lebanon News

U.S. delegation visits Arsal in the Bekaa

File- In this Friday, Oct. 7, 2011, a general view of the Bekaa village of Arsal, Lebanon. (The Daily Star, File)

BEIRUT: A U.S. Embassy delegation is visiting the Bekaa town of Arsal to check areas that have witnessed reported incursions by the Syrian Army into Lebanon, a security source told The Daily Star Friday.

Earlier this month, a farmer was killed in the village of Arsal when Syrian soldiers reportedly crossed several kilometers into Lebanese and shot in the direction of farms.

There have also been reports of incursions that have led to the damage of homes of some residents as a results of Syrian Army fire.

In the latest report on the implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the reported incursions into Lebanon, fearing that unrest in Syria would ignite further instability in Lebanon.

“I am deeply concerned at the impact of developments in Syria on the political and security situation in Lebanon. I strongly deplore the violent incursions and raids into Lebanese towns and 11 villages by Syrian Security Forces that resulted in death and injury,” Ban wrote.

“I call upon the government of the Syrian Arab republic immediately to cease all such incursions, and to respect Lebanon’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“These incursions and the ongoing crisis in Syria carry the potential of igniting further tensions inside Lebanon and beyond,” Ban added.

Resolution 1559 was issued in 2004 and called for the creation of a Lebanese-Syrian border to boost Lebanon’s control over its territory. It also called for the disarmament of militia groups.

Sources said the U.S. delegation cancelled the visit to Al-Qaa, another area in the Hermel region where incursions have been reported.





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