NewsExplosion injures 4 U.N. workers in Lebanon; Israel denies involvement

Explosion injures 4 U.N. workers in Lebanon; Israel denies involvement

An armored vehicle of the United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon, or UNIFIL, patrols in the Khiyam plain in Lebanon near the border with Israel on December 29. Four UNIFIL peacekeepers were injured in an explosion Saturday. File Photo by EPA-EFE

March 30 (UPI) — An explosion injured four United Nations peacekeeping personnel on Saturday, the agency said, while Israel and Lebanon traded accusations over who was responsible for the incident.

According to statement from the United Nations Interim Force In Lebanon, or UNIFIL, the explosion injured three military observers and one foreign language interpreter.

The explosion happened while the team patrolled on foot near Rmeish in southern Lebanon. The four were evacuated for medical treatment, and UNIFIL said it is investigating the origin of the explosion.

“Safety and security of U.N. personnel must be guaranteed,” the peacekeepers said. “All actors have a responsibility under international humanitarian law to ensure protection to non-combatants, including peacekeepers, journalists, medical personnel and civilians. We repeat our call for all actors to cease the current heavy exchanges of fire before more people are unnecessarily hurt.”

Lebanese media said the attack was conducted with a drone that allegedly targeted a UNIFIL vehicle. According to the reports, the UNIFIL team believed they were being followed by a drone and exited the vehicle before the missile struck.

The Lebanese Foreign Ministry blamed Israeli forces for the attack and said it intends to file a complaint to the U.N. Security Council.

The ministry in a statement said the attack comes within the context of “Israel’s deliberate policy of not respecting the decisions of international legitimacy and its representatives since 1948 until today.”

Israel, however, has denied involvement in the attack.

Israeli military spokesperson Avichay Adraee in a post on X Saturday said, “Contrary to what was published in Lebanon, the IDF did not target any vehicle belonging to the UNIFIL forces in the Rmeish area.”

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