UNITED NATIONS INTERIM FORCE IN LEBANON
23 July 2006
Heavy exchanges of fire continued with the same intensity along the length
of the Blue Line in the last 24 hours. Hezbollah fired rockets from various
locations, and the IDF continued the shelling and aerial bombardment. The
IDF is still present on the ground inside Lebanese territory in the area of
Marun Al Ras in the central sector, including inside the village itself. There
were reports of limited reinforcements in their presence yesterday afternoon,
and exchange of fire was reported in that area today.
There were seven incidents of firing close to UN positions from the Israeli
side during the past 24 hours, mainly due to aerial bombardment in the area
of the patrol base of the Observer Group Lebanon in Khiam. All UNIFIL
positions in the area of operation remain permanently occupied and
maintained by the troops. Yesterday, UNIFIL re-supplied a number of UN
forward positions close to the Blue Line, including two positions in the Marun
Al Ras area. Additional re-supply convoys are planned for today.
UNIFIL provided escort to 150 members of the Lebanese Joint Security
Forces and to a number of civilians from Bint Jubayl to Tibnin. It also
relocated a number of foreign nationals from the border areas to Tyre. One
civilian patient was evacuated from the UNIFIL hospital in Naqoura. 69
civilians (women and children, and 4 elderly men) from the area of Kafr
Dunin took shelter inside a Ghanaian battalion position following the aerial
bombardment. UNIFIL also distributed humanitarian aid to the civilian
population in the area of Naqoura. Some humanitarian convoys are planned
for today, but the ability to move will depend on the situation on the ground.
There are continued reports of local civilian population leaving their villages
and towns in numbers, especially in the central sector from the villages of
Mays al Jabal, Kafr Kila, Markaba, Hula and Bint Jubayl. Movement of
civilians from these areas continued today, despite of increasing destruction
and obstacles on the roads.