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Threat to the peace process in the Middle East

Resolution 1088 (1996)

Parliamentary Assembly
Assembly debate on 26 April 1996 (16th Sitting) (see Doc. 7540, report of the Political Affairs Committee, rapporteur: Mr de Puig). Text adopted by the Assembly on 26 April 1996 (16th Sitting).
1. The Assembly is deeply concerned about the escalation of violence along the border between Israel and Lebanon, which was provoked by a series of murderous Hizbullah attacks in March 1996.
2. Israel has the right to defend its people against terrorist attacks, if necessary through the use of force. Such force should, however, be proportionate and selective.
3. There can therefore be no justification either for the indiscriminate attacks on civilians and civil targets or their use as human shields and even less for attacks on camps under United Nations protection. These attacks have claimed many innocent lives, caused much suffering and forced hundreds of thousands of civilians to leave their homes.
4. The Assembly strongly condemns Hizbullah's strategy of hiding ammunition and weapons behind civilians and civilian installations.
5. The new climate of hatred that is being created puts the entire Middle East peace process, and its achievements, at risk. Only extremists can benefit from this.
6. The Assembly strongly supports the diplomatic efforts underway to reach an immediate cease-fire, essential for the re-opening of dialogue and negotiations, as well as all attempts to establish peace and stability in the region. In this respect, the Assembly welcomes the positive evolution of the Palestinian-Israeli agreements. The isolation and pursuit of extremists and their terrorist acts and, most recently, the decision of the Palestinian National Council to amend the Palestine Charter, definitely contribute to the building of confidence and dialogue and the implementation of peace.
7. It calls upon the Governments of Lebanon and Syria to disarm and control Hizbullah. As soon as the threats to and attacks on the civilian population in northern Israel have ended, the Israeli Government should be prepared to withdraw its forces from the "security zone" in southern Lebanon.
8. The subsequent stationing of a multinational force along the Israeli-Lebanese border would meet Israeli and Lebanese security concerns and could be an important stabilising factor.
9. The Assembly reiterates its commitment to a comprehensive peace process in the region, which would include Lebanon and Syria. Such a process would be the best guarantee against a repetition of the current tragic events.
10. The Assembly appeals to the Israeli observer delegation to continue to support such a peace process.