24 July 2012 In a meeting with Lebanon’s Prime Minister, a United Nations senior official today expressed concern over the over recent incidents along the country’s borders with Syria, and emphasized that the Security Council and the international community are committed to preserving security and stability in the area.
“I told the Prime Minister that Council members were concerned by the incidents along Lebanon’s borders with Syria and that they had stressed the importance of respect for Lebanon’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Derek Plumbly, said in a statement following his meeting with Prime Minister Najib Mikati.
“I hope that all will hear the message that Lebanon’s sovereignty must be respected,” Mr. Plumbly added while addressing reporters in Beirut afterwards.
Mr. Plumbly said Council members appreciate the determinations of Lebanon’s leaders to protect their country from the effects of the crisis in Syria, which has resulted in the deaths of more than 10,000 people, mostly civilians, and the displacement of tens of thousands more since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began some 16 months ago.
The Special Coordinator reiterated the international community’s commitment to continue supporting the Government in meeting its humanitarian obligations towards the thousands of places Syrians who have taken refuge in Lebanon.
According to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), some 18,000 Syrians crossed into Lebanon last week, with many refugees telling UNHCR that they planned to stay for three or four weeks until calm returned to the cities of Damascus and Homs.
To date, UNHCR has registered some 30,000 Syrian refugees in Lebanon, with 2,500 still awaiting registration.
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