Quotes: US MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

UN seeks help to free peacekeepers abducted in Golan  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 05/09/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN - Arab News) UNITED NATIONS: The UN Security Council called Wednesday on 'countries with influence' to press Al-Qaeda-linked insurgents to release 45 UN peacekeepers from Fiji abducted last week in the Golan Heights.

A press statement approved by all 15 council members after a briefing by UN peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous again demanded the immediate and unconditional release of the Fijian peacekeepers.

Heavy clashes have raged in the Golan Heights since Syrian rebels captured a border crossing between Syria and Israel near the abandoned town of Quneitra last Wednesday. Fighters from Al-Qaeda's Syria branch the Nusra Front abducted the Fijian peacekeepers and surrounded two Filipino contingents serving in the UN force known as UNDOF the following day.

The Security Council welcomed the news that all the Filipinos were safe and commended the UN peacekeeping mission's quick reaction force for its assistance.

Ladsous told reporters the peacekeepers have shown 'steadfastness and courage' and said the UN is working to obtain the swift and unconditional release of the Fijians.

'We are sparing no effort to obtain the release of the detained peacekeepers' he said but gave no details stressing the importance of 'discretion.'

Fiji commander's Brig. Gen. Mosese Tikoitoga said Tuesday that the Nusra Front has made three demands for the release of the peacekeepers: It wants to be taken off the UN terrorist list wants humanitarian aid delivered to parts of the Syrian capital Damascus and wants compensation for three of its fighters it says were killed in a shootout with UN officers.

The Nusra Front accused the UN of doing nothing to help the Syrian people since the uprising against President Bashar Assad began in March 2011. It said the Fijians were seized in retaliation for the UN's ignoring 'the daily shedding of the Muslims' blood in Syria' and even colluding with Assad's army 'to facilitate its movement to strike the vulnerable Muslims' through a buffer zone in the Golan Heights.

UNDOF was established in May 1974 following intensified firing on the Israel-Syria border after the 1973 Arab-Israeli war. Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria in 1967 and Syria has campaigned for decades for return of the land. For nearly four decades the UN monitors helped enforce a stable truce between Israel and Syria but the Golan Heights has increasingly become a battlefield in the more than three-year-old Syrian conflict.

The mission currently has troops from six countries: Fiji India Ireland Nepal Netherlands and the Philippines. A number of countries have withdrawn their peacekeepers due to the escalating violence.

Fiji's commander says the nation won't abandon its mission in Syria and he is even willing to replace the 45 troops if they need to recuperate if and when they are released.

Ladsous said UNDOF has been strengthened with armored equipment and other military hardware.

'I think it's very important that the mandate of UNDOF which has contributed to stability should continue' Ladsous said.

US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power also said Wednesday that UNDOF's 'original purpose is still critically important' and that the spillover from Syria's conflict 'only underscores how important it is for us to continue to have observers there monitoring disengagement.'

But Power the current Security Council president said 'there is no question that the circumstances that UNDOF finds itself in are vastly different than anything UNDOF had experienced before.'

She said the Security Council has not heard from the UN secretariat or the commanders on the ground that the mission's mandate needs to be revised. But she said that among council members there is 'great openness to being responsive to the requests from headquarters or from the field ... to make sure that the mission is appropriately tailored to the circumstances on the ground.'

In its statement the council commended the peacekeepers for their bravery in facing the threats and challenges in the volatile area and reiterated its 'unconditional support for UNDOF and the vital role it plays in support of the stability in the Golan Heights.'

The council demanded that all groups abandon areas controlled by UNDOF and the Queneitra crossing and return all vehicles weapons and equipment belonging to the peacekeepers.

 


Arab News




  MENA News Headlines
 Oct 25 2014 - Qatar's inflation rate to hit 5.5 percentMENAFN
(MENAFN) Qatar's inflation rate in 2014 is expected to touch 5.5 percent due to steady rise in housing rentals, according to the finding of a research conducted by Standard Chartered, The Peninsula ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Flydubai launches two flights to TanzaniaMENAFN
(MENAFN) Dubai-based flydubai's inaugural flights to Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar touched down in Tanzania. The new routes further underline flydubai's rapid expansion in Africa, which has seen the ...

 Oct 25 2014 - UAE air cargo to grow 4.1 percent in 5 yearsMENAFN
(MENAFN) The International Air Transport Association (IATA) Airline Industry Forecast 2014-2018 shows that international freight volumes are expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Qatar- QSL: El Jaish face Al Gharafa todayThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Third-placed El Jaish will seek to narrow the gap between them and two higher placed rivals - Lekhwiya and Al Sadd € when they take on Al Gharafa in the ninth round match of ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Somalia- Mogadishu port on development pathThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Camels are prepared for export at the loading dock at the seaport in Mogadishu. The Somali government's grand vision for Mogadishu port under its new Turkish managers sees ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Saudi Shias protest death sentencesThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) More than 100 people protested in eastern Saudi Arabia yesterday to oppose death sentences against a Shia religious leader and seven others convicted after earlier ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Palestine defies US, issues statehood ultimatumThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Palestine's chief peace negotiator has laid out in the clearest terms yet plans to establish an independent Palestinian state within three years, even if it means ignoring ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Police kill six militants ahead of key Tunisian pollThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Tunisian police killed six suspected militants, five of them women, in a raid on a suburban house yesterday after a 28-hour standoff, fanning tensions ahead of a landmark ...

 Oct 25 2014 - US looking into possible chlorine gas attack in Iraq: KerryThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) The United States is looking into reports that Islamic State fighters used chlorine gas against Iraqi security forces, US Secretary of State John Kerry said yesterday.Kerry, ...

 Oct 25 2014 - Qatar- Ooredoo marathon offers QR1m prizesThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Registration for Ooredoo Doha Marathon 2015 is open, as the company begins preparations to ensure its biggest event yet on January 9.It will provide an opportunity to meet ...

more...


 






Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

My MENAFN
Portfolio Tracker

Voting

Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help