Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations on Saturday called on the Security Council to address the Hezbollah terror group’s “weapons buildup’ in southern Lebanon, echoing comments made by the United States envoy to the UN.
“US Ambassador Haley is correct. UNIFIL cannot continue to remain blind to the weapons buildup in southern Lebanon and they must put an end to Hezbollah’s Security Council violations to ensure calm in our region,” Danny Danon said, referring to the UN force tasked with keeping the peace on Lebanon’s southern border with Israel.
“I call on the Security Council to adopt a more robust UNFIL mandate that will address the serious security threats posed by Hezbollah,” he added.
Dannon’s comments mirrored those made Nikki Haley on Friday, in which she accused the commander of UNIFIL of of turning a blind eye to Hezbollah weapons smuggling.
Haley said the 10,500-strong UNIFIL force was “not doing its job effectively” and singled out its Irish leader, Major General Michael Beary.
“Since 2006 there has been a massive flow of illegal weapons to Hezbollah, mostly smuggled in by Iran,” Haley alleged.
“They openly threaten Israel. Hezbollah is a terrorist organization that is very destabilizing to the region.”
The United States blasted the commander of the UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon on Friday, accusing him of turning a blind eye to Hezbollah weapons smuggling.
US ambassador Nikki Haley said the 10,500-strong UNIFIL force was “not doing its job effectively” and singled out its Irish leader, Major General Michael Beary.
“What I find totally baffling is the view of the UNIFIL commander General Beary,” Haley told reporters, accusing him of ignoring Hezbollah’s arms dumps. “General Beary says there are no Hezbollah weapons.”
“He seems to be the only person in south Lebanon who is blind. That’s an embarrassing lack of understanding on what’s going on around him,” she said.
Israel is to tell UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres during his first visit to the country this week it will “no longer tolerate anti-Israel bias” at the international body, Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said Sunday.
Guterres is set to land in Israel Sunday night for a three-day visit that will include meetings with senior Israeli officials in Jerusalem and Palestinian officials in the West Bank, as well as a stop in the Gaza Strip, where the United Nations runs a major Palestinian aid program. The visit will be his first to the region since taking the helm at the UN in January.
Briefing journalists ahead of the trip, Hotovely said two key issues would be addressed during the visit: ending “anti-Israel bias” at the 193-nation organization, and changing the UNIFIL mandate for UN activities on Israel’s northern border.
“We are seeking a dramatic change in the way the UN treats Israel. It’s time to place the issue squarely on the table and address it head-on,” Hotovely said, threatening funding cuts for the body if changes were not implemented.
“It’s no longer just us threatening this.” she said. “The US position has changed. Led by Nikki Haley, they have made clear that they will not tolerate bias against us and will no longer be giving an open check.”
In April Israel announced it would reduce its annual membership payment to the United Nations by $2 million following recent “anti-Israel” votes in the organization’s bodies.
Haley, who has pledged to tackle hostility toward the Jewish state at a UN, said that if the Human Rights Council failed to make the required changes, the US would consider quitting the body and looking for ways to promote human rights in different frameworks.
The HQ-16 can lock-on eight targets and engage four simultaneously. Its missile has a claimed maximum flight speed of Mach 2.8, with a single-hit probability rate of between 70% and 98%. In 2016, an upgraded version known as the HQ-16B was unveiled with a greater range of fire at 70 km.
The HQ-17, however, is highly mobile. Sitting on an all-terrain tracked chassis, the HQ-17 usually accompanies fast-moving armored units. An improved version of the Russian Tor-M1, the HQ-17 has a 12 km range of fire.
The transporting of HQ missiles to Tibet shows the PLA is reinforcing its layered air defense arrangement in anticipation of Indian air power. The systems’ suitability for operating on the high plateau was confirmed at an exercise, in May, in Tibet’s Tanggula Mountains.
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