An unusual confrontation in front of Ambassador Nikki Haley

UNIFIL commander tells US UN Ambassador that situation with Hezbollah is calm, Israeli general responds that UNIFIL does not do its job.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Haley in the north
Haley in the north
David Azagury/U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv

Deputy Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Aviv Kochavi confronted UNIFIL commander Michael Berry in the presence of US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley during a tour of the northern border last week.

Channel 2 reported on Sunday that while Haley was watching an IDF exercise in the northern sector, she asked the UNIFIL commander if a change was needed to better handle the situation on the border against the background of Hezbollah's strengthening and rearming.

"The sector is calm, the situation is good and there is no need for change," the commander of the UNIFIL force replied. The deputy chief of staff intervened and said, "I am sorry, my friend. We think completely differently. UNIFIL does not enter villages and cities [to prevent rearming]."

Kochavi then appealed to Ambassador Haley, saying that "a change in the guidelines and means for UNIFIL will indeed enable us to confront Hezbollah, which grossly violates UN resolutions."

According to the Channel 2 report, Ambassador Haley was pleased that she was exposed to this fact, since it could lead to a move to cut funding for the UN peacekeepers. She told an Israeli official: "It's good that I was exposed to the argument and the truth of their presentation."

"It will affect [future] moves in the UN."

The Second Lebanon War ended with an armistice and the signing of UN Treaty 1701 which announced the dispatch of 15,000 UN inspectors to south Lebanon, simultaneous to Israeli withdrawal. It included the prohibition of carrying arms without consent of the Lebanese government; and the prohibition of the trade or transfer of arms to Hezbollah. Lebanon was asked to implement resolution 1559 dealing with disarmament of armed militias.

Since then, there has been no disarmament and Iran and Syria have rearmed Hezbollah to the tune of tens of thousands of rockets and missiles, under the nose of UNIFIL. Israel has attacked convoys of arms on their unimpeded way to Hezbollah.