After a year of relative peace, the tiny village of Azziye in southern Lebanon stands as a grim reminder that an internal settlement has still not been found.
GV Destroyed village of Azziye in southern Lebanon
SV Rubble, with wrecked tractors half buried (4 shots)
SV Oranges rotting on the ground. Farmers harvesting bananas, putting them in baskets and transporting them by truck (3 shots)
SV INT Interviewer speaking to former Lebanese Prime Minister, Saeb Salam, who replies in English
REPORTER: "Mr. Salam, after one year of peace what do you think the future of Lebanon is now?"
SALAM: "Well to start with, I'm sorry to say we can't call it one year of peace. It's not total peace nor everywhere in Lebanon. And especially not in the south of Lebanon, with the continuous Israeli aggressions, which have been a lull for the last few weeks as you know. But as to the future I hope we have had lessons. We are different now. We don't call it peace, I don't, but, it's not like the so-called dirty war we went through. It was terrible and awful. But I hope we are coming out of it and my hope in the Lebanese is very great all the time. I depend on the faith they have, the Moslems and Christians together. We have Moslems and Christians in the Lebanon."
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: After a year of relative peace, the tiny village of Azziye in southern Lebanon stands as a grim reminder that an internal settlement has still not been found. Much of the bitter fighting of a year ago has disappeared, but in the south particularly, the tension remains. It was only in November that Azziye was bombed, as the Israelis retaliated after commando rocket attacks on the honeymoon resort of Naharya. In an interview in Beirut on Friday (30 December) former Lebanese Prime Minister Saeb Salam emphasised the current dangers to full peace, but at the same time said he was hopeful for the country's future.
SYNOPSIS: Azziya is roughly half way between the Israeli border, and Lebanon's southern-most city, the old Phoenician port of Tyre.
Once it was modest hamlet, but now it's a sea of rubble, with the wreckage of tractors littered among what were concrete block homes. The village is deserted and the survivors of the Israeli air strike have moved away to other villages and towns. In many ways the village typifies the plight of southern Lebanon.
Fruit growing is the major source of income in an area, in which sporadic fighting continues between the various factions. It's a gloomy picture, but Saeb Salam is optimistic.