“The Security Council cannot adopt a business-as-usual approach when so much is at stake,” said US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley in a statement on Wednesday, released as closed-door UN Security Council consultations on the topic wrapped up.
“We call on the members of the Security Council to join us in taking real action to make UNIFIL a stronger peacekeeping mission and to stand up against forces of terror in Lebanon and around the region,” she said, using the acronym for the UN Interim Force in Lebanon.
“Hezbollah openly boasts about its illegal stockpile of weapons and publicly threatens” Israel , she added.
But France said on Wednesday it wants the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon to stick to its current mandate.
Anne Gueguen, France’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, told reporters her government saw no need to change the 2006 Security Council resolution that sets the mission’s current mandate.
“We want to keep the mandate as such,” she said.
Gueguen spoke before the talks on whether to extend the mandate of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon for another year.
After the talks, Russian ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said his government also saw no need to change the mandate for the force, a position he said was shared by many at the session.
“We think this mandate should be renewed in the present form,” he said.