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Brazil Favors Syrian Troop Withdrawal from Lebanon

Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Relations released a note in which the Brazilian government considers the announcement made by Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad that the troops stationed in Lebanon will be moved to the Bekaa valley ” an important step in the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1559.”

The resolution, drafted in September, 2004, emphasizes, among other aspects, the need to respect Lebanon’s territorial integrity and political sovereignty, withdrawing foreign troops, and disarming the militias.

According to the note, “the Brazilian government defends the full-scale implementation of the Security Council resolutions, which are legally binding. This stance is manifested in the present instance by Brazil’s support for the terms of the Presidential Declaration, approved by the Security Council, on the assassination of Lebanese ex-Prime Minister, Rafik Hariri.”

The note also informs that, during his recent trip to Arab countries, the Minister of Foreign Relations, Celso Amorim, “emphasized to his interlocutors the importance of observing Resolution 1559.”

And in the Syrian capital, Damascus, the Minister “attempted to persuade the Syrian government to comply with the resolution and stressed the importance of finding ways to implement it.”

The announcement of the troop withdrawal was made yesterday March 6 by President Assad, following weeks of pressure from the Lebanese population. The troops will be moved to the border between the two countries, and withdrawal is expected to take place in two phases.



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