This Thursday, Minister of Defence Gitte Lillelund Bech paid a visit to the Danish soldiers at the United Nations Interim Force in South Lebanon (UNIFIL). Also attending the trip was member of the Defence Committee, John Dyrby Paulsen of the Social Democrats.

At the Danish logistics unit in UNIFIL in South Lebanon, the delegation talked with the soldiers about their tasks and conditions, and got an impression of how the soldiers’ effort contributes to the possibility of the contingents of other countries to maintain the mandate for the UN Interim Force in South Lebanon.

On Friday, the delegation held meetings in Beirut. Here the minister of defence had the opportunity to talk to Lebanese minister of defence, Elias Murr, and to Spanish Major General Alberto Asarta, who heads the United Nations Interim Force in South Lebanon. The delegation also met with the Danish ambassador in Beirut.

The Danish contingent took over responsibility for the logistics tasks at UNIFIL on 1st December 2009. It is for the present at the disposal of UNIFIL for 12 months, with the possibility of an extension. The tasks of the logistics unit are primarily transportation support in connection with the continuous substitution of personnel at the UNIFIL mission.

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) was established by UN Security Council resolution 425 and 426 of 19 March 1978 with a view to supervising the armistice between Lebanon and Israel. As a result of the conflict between Israel and the Hizbollah in the summer of 2006, the UN adopted a new and stronger mandate for UNIFIL by Security Council resolution 1701 on 11 August 2006. Its overall purpose was to support the Lebanese government in expanding its execution of authority to the entire country in order to prevent renewed battles, and thus establish the proper framework for a lasting peace solution.