Lebanese President Michel Aoun called on the United Nations on Friday to respond to Israel’s alleged violations of Lebanese airspace, the presidency’s office said, amid heightened tensions along the border.
On Aug. 5, the Israeli military said its warplanes targeted militant rocket launch sites in southern Lebanon after two rockets were fired toward Israel. The airstrikes were followed by two Israeli air raids near the town of Mahmudiya, Lebanese media reported.
During a meeting at Baabda Palace, Aoun told the UN’s Special Coordinator for Lebanon Joanna Wronecka that the alleged Israeli strikes breached Lebanon’s sovereignty. He also said they were a violation of UN Resolution 1701, which halted the 2006 war between Israel and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.
"This requires swift action by the United Nations to ensure that such acts are put to a halt and never happen again," Aoun said, according to Lebanon’s MTV.
"Tensions witnessed in the south on Aug. 5 and the airstrikes Israeli warplanes launched on southern villages for the first time since 2006 have agitated the security situation following the repeated Israeli attacks on Lebanon, which led to filing a complaint before the UN," he said.
Aoun’s comments come after both Syrian state media and a pro-opposition war monitor reported Thursday on Israeli strikes in Syria conducted via Lebanon’s airspace. The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Israeli warplanes late Thursday had targeted Hezbollah “arms depots and military positions” near Syria’s Homs province. According to the war monitor, four pro-Iran fighters died in the strikes.
Lebanese civilian aviation chief Fadi al-Hassan told Lebanon’s Al-Jadeed TV that two civilian planes in the area were asked to change their flight paths to avoid the missiles.
Stefano Del Col, head of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, echoed Aoun, tweeting that overflights of Lebanese territory by Israeli fighter aircraft are violations of both Lebanon’s sovereignty and Resolution 1701.
“I again call on the [Israel Defense Forces] to desist from such actions, which undermine UNIFIL efforts to contain tensions and build confidence among the local population,” Del Col said.