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Department of Political Affairs

Lebanon

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Secretary-General Ban and UNSCOL chief Plumbly (l)

The United Nations works on multiple fronts to assist Lebanon in forging a peaceful, stable and democratic future. The Office of the United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon (UNSCOL) provides leadership and coordination to UN efforts in the country. The Beirut-based field operation of the Department of Political Affairs is headed by UN Special Coordinator Derek Plumbly. UNSCOL monitors political developments, promotes dialogue and provides overall political guidance to the multifaceted UN presence in the country.

Implementing Security Council Resolution 1701
The United Nations helped to bring Lebanon’s civil war to a close in the early 1990s. The 2006 conflict between Israel and Hizbollah brought a new set of political, peacekeeping, and development challenges to the country. Among UNSCOL’s most important responsibilities is its assistance and reporting on the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1701 under which the fighting was halted in August 2006. The resolution called for a permanent ceasefire between Israel and Lebanon and gave a framework for a long-term solution based on full respect for the border demarcation between both states, the so-called Blue Line. The framework also includes security arrangements to prevent a resumption of hostilities and a monopoly for the Government of Lebanon on the use of force and weapons within the country. UNSCOL works closely with the UN peacekeeping mission in southern Lebanon, UNIFIL, which is assisting the Lebanese Army in extending its presence and authority in its area of operations.
 
Coordination with other UN actors
UNSCOL is in constant dialogue with actors across the political spectrum in Lebanon, as well as with relevant neighboring states. The Office follows political developments and coordinates UN technical assistance. In addition, UNSCOL coordinates the activities of the UN Country Team with the Government of Lebanon, donors and international financial institutions in line with the overall objectives of the United Nations in Lebanon, particularly those relating to reconstruction, development and reform.
 
DPA also works closely with the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Implementation of Security Council resolution 1559 (2004), Terje Rød-Larsen. This resolution calls for the UN-verified withdrawal of foreign forces from Lebanon, the disbanding of all militias and the extension of the control of the Government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory.
 
Special Tribunal for Lebanon
The United Nations supports the efforts and the independence of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon established to bring to justice those responsible for the 2005 terrorist attack that took the lives of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others.
 

Former Special Coordinator Michael Williams on Southern Lebanon