26 de julio de 2006
Excellencies, Dear Friends
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The death and destruction we have witnessed in the
past two weeks, including yesterday's tragic killing
of UN peacekeepers, compels this conference to send
a strong message, and to speak with one voice. We
must say, to the people of Lebanon, to the people
of Israel, to people throughout the wider Middle
East, that we will do our utmost to help them find
a path towards peace.
The situation remains horrendous and dangerous.
We need action on three fronts.
First and most urgent, we need an immediate cessation
of the hostilities that began on 12 July with Hezbollah's
reckless attack across the Blue Line and the abduction
of two Israeli soldiers.
We need a cessation of hostilities because we face
a grave humanitarian crisis. The UN Emergency Relief
Coordinator, Jan Egeland, has just visited Lebanon,
and reports that some 800,000 people are being affected
in one way or another, whether through displacement,
injury, trauma or other fallout.
Meanwhile, rockets continue to fall on Israeli cities,
taking lives and instilling deep fear among hundreds
of thousands of people. Some 400 Lebanese have been
killed, and many thousands wounded. Several dozen
Israelis have been killed, and hundreds wounded.
May I ask now that we all stand and observe a minute
of silence for those who have died in this conflict.
As we honor the dead, we must wonder how many more
will fall in the weeks to come. And we must be clear,
there remains great potential for further escalation.
Therefore I call on Hezbollah to stop its deliberate
targeting of Israeli population centres.
And I call on Israel to end its bombardments, blockades
and ground operations.
A temporary cessation of hostilities would offer
crucial hours and days for essential humanitarian
tasks, including the distribution of relief aid
and the evacuation of non-combatants and the wounded.
A key stipulation for such a halt in fighting would
be that the parties must not, I repeat, must not
take advantage of such a pause to conduct offensive
operations, redeploy or resupply.
An international force has a vital role to play
in this scenario. Such a force should be seen as
a bridge. In the short term, it would help with
humanitarian operations, and support the Government
of Lebanon in dealing with the emergency and in
providing security to the Lebanese people. But over
the longer term, it would also assist the Government
in implementing the Taef agreement and Security
Council resolutions 1559 and 1680, in particular
by helping the Government to extend its authority
- including a monopoly on the use of force -- throughout
the country, strengthen the Lebanese Army, and disarm
all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias. Such a force
could only operate with the consent of the Government
of Lebanon and based on the consent of the Lebanese
parties on its scope and mandate.
Second, we need a political framework so that a
cessation of hostilities can be transformed into
a longer-term process of enduring peace. Such a
framework should address several issues, including
captives, delineation of Lebanon's borders and a
mechanism for monitoring and guaranteeing its implementation.
I know that many of you attending this conference
have your own ideas on how to bring about peace.
We must bring our best ideas together into a coherent,
achievable package that all parties can endorse.
As we do so, we absolutely must avoid falling into
the sequencing trap, in which each side establishes
its own fixed notion of what must happen, in what
order. To get out of today's crisis, implementation
must proceed in parallel. And for solutions to last,
it will also require the constructive engagement
of the countries of the region, including Syria
Third, this conference should commit to a strong
economic package for Lebanon. In the crumbling of
its buildings and bridges around them, the people
of Lebanon have seen years of painstaking reconstruction
un-done with terrible speed. Lebanon must be rebuilt
-- again. A donor framework should be established
in order to secure funding for reconstruction and
development, as we just heard from the Prime Minister
and Foreign Minister of Italy.
A cessation of hostilities, a political framework,
the deployment of an international force, and agreement
on a reconstruction programme would give us the
beginnings of a way out of this crisis. The Security
Council must play its rightful role. Therefore I
ask this conference to urge the Security Council
to call for an immediate cessation of hostilities.
This could pave the way for further progress, and
signal the Council's intention to give strong international
support to the process.
The people of Lebanon are reliving scenes from a
chapter in their country's history they thought
had been closed. This time, we need solutions that
will stand the test of time. Israelis, for their
part, thought they had seen the last of rockets
terrorizing them from beyond their northern border,
but the conflict has been rejoined more fiercely
than thought possible. The wider region, too, can
hardly stand another conflict alongside the sectarian
strife, extremism and economic stagnation that are
Indeed, looking at this broader picture, it is also
clear that we need a new push for a comprehensive
Middle East peace. Without this, we are only buying
time until the next explosion. Despite all that
has happened, despite even the current situation
in Gaza, clear majorities of Israelis and Palestinians
favour a negotiated peace.
We need a peace track here, too - not least to help
remove a pretext used by extremists throughout the
region, including in Lebanon. The United Nations
remains strongly committed to this objective, and
intends to do all it can to revive dialogue towards
a comprehensive peace in accordance with Security
In the days and weeks ahead, we will need all of
you to provide significant humanitarian, military
and political support. We cannot return to the situation
that prevailed before this crisis erupted. Moreover,
the international community must not disappoint
the people who are looking to us for help. Together,
we must do our part to make Lebanon whole and secure,
to make Israel secure and safe, and to set the region
on its way toward comprehensive peace.
Thank you very much.