FM Levy Meets UN Envoy Larsen

(Communicated by Foreign Ministry Spokesman)
March 28, 2000

Foreign Minister David Levy met today (May 28) with UN envoy, Terje Larsen, who expressed complete satisfaction with Israeli cooperation in fulfilling the conditions of Security Council Resolution 425.

At the meeting, Minister Levy stated the following:

  • Israel showed, and continues to show, restraint in the face of provocation.
  • It is not yet clear whether what we are witnessing now in Lebanon is a release of pent-up emotions indicative of future quiet or agitation indicating disquiet and a return to the cycle of violence.
  • At this stage, some degree of doubt exists concerning Lebanon’s willingness to cooperate. There must be cooperation with the UN.
  • The armed militias are like a time bomb placed at the doorstep of the central Government of Lebanon.
  • Only a strong, determined country such as Israel could have decided upon, and carried out, the withdrawal from Lebanon. Israel displayed self-confidence, military fortitude and political good-judgement.
  • After a generation of hardship, the Government of Lebanon now has an opportunity to reestablish its sovereignty, restore quiet and rehabilitate the area –

    "Lebanon has an obligation. It remains to be seen which path it will choose – one in which its own interests are served, or one in which it continues playing a role in the games of others. If Lebanon plays the games of others, it will be playing with fire, in its own house."

  • UNIFIL forces were sent to bolster the Lebanese Government so that the latter can assert its authority over the entire country. Lebanese cooperation with the UNIFIL will assist in the vitally important process of Lebanon’s recovery, so there will be no remorse in the future.

At the meeting, UN envoy Larsen declared his intention to meet with the President and Prime Minister of Lebanon, and told of his planned meeting with the Foreign Minister of Syria in Damascus on Wednesday (May 31).