The United Nations Security Council discussed the Israel-Lebanon conflict for nearly five hours on Saturday night (24 June) and adjourned until Monday to permit delegates to consult on a possible resolution.
GV INT Security Council (MUTE)
LV ZOOM TO Israeli delegate (HOLD SOUND DOWN)
TV PAN FROM Council in session to Lebanese speaker (SOUND)
MR. GHORRA: "Mr. Tekoah speaks of resorting to such acts against Lebanon as a last resort, in self-defence. He repeats that so often, "the last resort", to make us believe that Israel has resorted to other means. To other means, among others, perhaps the United Nations. I like to know when did Mr. Tekoah come to the Security Council and presented a complaint against Lebanon before Lebanon presented an official and valid complaint against Israel. If it really has serious grounds to accuse us, of anything, and if they can substantiate a case and not publicate a case, well let them come to you, Mr. President, and to the members of the Council, and say well, we are going to accuse..."
"...Lebanon. Lebanon this time is going to be this time the defendant. We Israel are going to be the plaintiff. We had enough of Lebanon being the plaintiff. We want to change roles. We want to be the plaintiff this time and let Lebanon be the accused, the defendant. Mr. President, we are willing to accept that. I challenge Mr. Tekoah, I challenge Israel at any time, to bring a serious case against Lebanon to this Council."
THE SOUND ON FILM INCLUDES A PORTION OF THE STATEMENT BY LEBANESE AMBASSADOR GHORRA. A TRANSCRIPT FOLLOWS:
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The United Nations Security Council discussed the Israel-Lebanon conflict for nearly five hours on Saturday night (24 June) and adjourned until Monday to permit delegates to consult on a possible resolution.
United States Ambassador George Bush served notice that he would put in a draft resolution at the appropriate time. Delegates of France, Britain, Belgium and Italy were also known to be working on a text. It is thought that the draft would call on Israel to abide strictly by the Council's previous resolutions on the Middle East question and refrain from "all military acts against lebanon."
The U.S. Ambassador said that the resolution would be "balanced", dealing with both the activities of Lebanon-based guerrillas against Israel and the Israeli's retaliatory measures.
The new round of Council debate, the first on the Middle East crisis since February, was called by both Lebanon and Israel after clashes which began on Wednesday (21 June) and were reported to have continued into Saturday (24 June). The 15-nation council began debate on the issue on Friday (23 June).
Speaking at the Saturday night session, Lebanese Ambassador Edouard Ghorra accused Israel of taking up arms to apply its own law and rules in the Middle East. He refuted the statement by Israeli Ambassador Yosef Tekoah that Lebanon is responsible for Arab guerrilla operations against Israel.