News Brief

The United Nations said there are hold-ups in negotiating the final withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon. Israel this month quit all Lebanese territory that its forces overran during the war with Hezbollah, except for the northern part of Ghajar, a village straddling the border. Talks have been under way for weeks on Israel’s demand that the bolstered United Nations peacekeeper force in southern Lebanon impose new security regulations in Ghajar to ensure Hezbollah does not use the village as a conduit for attacks or drug smuggling. The UNIFIL force said Thursday that it has had “productive” meetings with Israel on Ghajar and hoped for a troop withdrawal there soon. “Minor administrative issues with relations to Ghajar residents are still pending. UNIFIL hopes they will be solved at the next meeting early next week,” it said in a statement.

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