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Volume 451: debated on Wednesday 1 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment she has made of the prospects for the deployment of an international force in Lebanon. (98342)

The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) has already begun deploying in strength under its new mandate set out in UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1701. Following the first phase of the expansion of UNIFIL, over 8,800 troops have been deployed. A second phase is in preparation, which will take the numbers up to approximately 10,000. The ceasefire that was established on 14 August by UNSCR 1701 is continuing to hold and, with UNIFIL support, the Lebanese armed forces have deployed in the south of the country for the first time in many years. The UN Secretary General, in his 30 day report on the implementation of UNSCR 1701, said the co-ordination mechanism between the Lebanese armed forces, the Israel Defense Forces and UNIFIL was going well.