U.N. raps Syrian smuggling

The U.N. Security Council condemned arms smuggling from Syria to Lebanon’s Hezbollah guerrillas. The 15-nation body issued a policy statement Monday in which it voiced “deep concern at mounting information by Israel and other states of illegal movements of arms in Lebanon, and in particular across the Lebanese-Syrian border.” The censure appeared to have been prompted by a report by U.N. envoy Terje Roed-Larsen in which he described arms from Syria reaching “elements” in Lebanon – an apparent reference to Hezbollah, which has been building up its military strength since last year’s war with Israel. The Security Council further endorsed Beirut’s fight against Palestinian Islamic militants in a Lebanese refugee camp, but also saved some criticism for Israeli surveillance overflights. The council “reiterates its call for the strict respect for Lebanon’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, including its airspace,” the statement said.

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