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Beirut - UN Chief: Israel Should Pay Lebanon $1 billion To Compensate Environmental Damage

Published on: September 7, 2008 07:27 PM
By: dailystar.com.lb
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Beirut - UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has renewed calls for Israel to pay Lebanon around $1 billion in compensation for damage inflicted during the summer 2006 war with the Jewish state, news reports said on Saturday. The figure, which is based on calculations made by the World Bank, is intended to reimburse Lebanon for environmental and material damage it suffered during the war but most notably Israel’s bombing of the Jiyyeh power station, said the daily Al-Akhbar newspaper.

The attack, considered to be Lebanon’s worst ever environmental disaster, released between 12,500 and 15,000 tons of fuel oil into the Mediterranean Sea, polluting two-thirds of Lebanon’s coastline and endangering already vulnerable marine life. It also affected northern neighboring countries, including Syria.

Ban will present a report on the oil spill to the UN General Assembly before October this year, said Al-Akhbar. The report is said to include findings by the Lebanese National Center for Scientific Research and the French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea, both of which have gathered evidence in Lebanon showing the increase of such medical conditions as skin diseases and pneumonia following the war.


In addition to environmental destruction, Lebanon suffered substantial damage to its infrastructure during the 34-day war, in which 1,200 Lebanese - mostly civilians - were killed and 4,409 wounded. Throughout and following the conflict, Israel maintained a tight sea and air blockade on the country, hampering humanitarian assistance and evacuation efforts.

A report published by the UN-appointed Commission of Inquiry on Lebanon in November 2006 found that Israel had used “excessive, indiscriminate and disproportionate use of force” during the conflict, which followed Hizbullah’s capture of two Israeli soldiers.

The Lebanese government said 32 “vital points” came under attack, with 109 bridges, 137 roads and 137 factories targeted by Israeli air strikes. Thirty UN positions came under “direct attack,” added the report, resulting in the death of internationally “protected personnel.” A number of medical facilities and private homes also came under fire.

The UN report said it was “convinced” that the bombing of Jiyyeh was a “premeditated” attack and that it “considers that it will take years for Lebanon, with the help of the international community, to be able to rebuild all the damaged buildings and other facilities.” Israel’s actions, which the UN dubbed “collective punishment,” led to the internal displacement of 735,000 people and the evacuation of 230,000 others.

The report also stated that the “failure” of Israel “to take the necessary precautionary measures violated Israel’s obligations to protect the natural environment and the right to health. In particular it caused significant damage to the Byblos archaeological site, included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.”

Lebanon also continues to suffer from the presence of unexploded cluster munitions. Israeli artillery and warplanes dropped an estimated 4 million cluster bombs over South Lebanon, most during the last 48 hours of the conflict - after a cease-fire was assured - the UN estimated. Earlier this month, the body responsible for de-mining efforts in Lebanon, the UN Mine Action Co-ordination Center, said it would be forced to halt its work due to a lack of funds.

Israel has ignored all UN requests made since August 2007 to compensate Lebanon.


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Read Comments (18)  —  Post Yours »


 Sep 07, 2008 at 07:34 PM McCain-Palin 08 Says:

Israel should submit the amount of damage that was done thru out the years of bumbing with in Israel by hiszballah and hamas etc etc


 Sep 07, 2008 at 07:46 PM an Says:

exactly. israel should pay for the war with ''the inoccents'' but they should pay the billions they damaged, and the billions spent in security


 Sep 07, 2008 at 07:49 PM YOYO Says:

And he almost seemed like he was smart enough to run the UN......


 Sep 07, 2008 at 07:52 PM gefilta fish Says:

Its probably cheaper just to nuke Lebanon, if you know what I mean...


 Sep 07, 2008 at 07:53 PM DEBKA Says:

I think it would be nice if they would pay them for the damage, just a word to the U.N. chief -wait untill israel goes in again and takes care of the hizballah-iran newly formed terror groups so the lebanese goverment will be able to claim a loss of 10 billion instead of just 1.


 Sep 07, 2008 at 08:07 PM someone Says:

that picture really looks like israel did a great job I think they should consider doing it again


 Sep 07, 2008 at 08:08 PM o no Says:

what a joke


 Sep 07, 2008 at 08:10 PM Vote McCain - Pailin Says:

This moon yuld is spaced out. EY should submit a bill the other way for 60 years of damages sort of in a way EY nicely pointed out to egypt when they tried pulling the same hypocrisy. egypt decided they couldn't pay reparations for 210 years of enslaving some 600K yiddin.


 Sep 07, 2008 at 09:56 PM Anonymous Says:

i think the un is bored


 Sep 07, 2008 at 10:54 PM Anonymous Says:

Remember the Gemora (I forgot where), in which the Egyptians complained to Alexander the Great that we owed them for all the booty we "stole" out of Mitzrayim when we left. The Chachomin then added up the bill for 210 years of slavery and presented THAT to Alexander. Of course, the Egyptians stuck their tails between their legs and slithered away (or did Alexander execute them, I don't remember).

Things haven't changed...


 Sep 08, 2008 at 12:07 AM Anonymous Says:

This is akin to a man who (lo aleinu) kills his parents, when brought in front of the judge for sentencing asks the judge for leniency and to have mercy on him since he's an orphan... It would be funny if it wasn't so tragic.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 12:47 AM Charlie Hall Says:

Uh, Lebanon started the war!


 Sep 08, 2008 at 02:00 AM Anonymous Says:

Chutzpa takes on a new meaning. 7:34 is correct, Let them pay us for the damages they caused first.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 04:14 AM Anonymous Says:

So stupid of Moon,. When will Lebanon punish Hezbollah and with it pay Israel for bombing Israel during that war and for the loss of Israeli lives and major property damage.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 09:19 AM murray Says:

Does the US have to pay Japan for the environmental damage from the nukes of ww2?
Lebanon should have to pay Israel for the cost of the bombs used, as they are the guilty party. Just like in some countries -after guilty criminals get the firing squad, the families are given the bill for the bullets used.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 11:34 AM chicago dude Says:

I thought the Anti Semite Kofi Annan was out. I guess they just replaced him with another anti semite.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 11:50 AM Avrohom Abba Says:

Please don't bring in the U.N. because they only exist to get free meetings, immunity for all their drugged and drunk employees and free parking because they are never made to pay any parking fine. Alos, I foorgot, they also use the U.N. building as a meeting place to plan vetoes of any pro Israel issue and to enact condemnation afeter condemnation against the U.S.A. and Israel. Lebanon should pay Israel for making life very uncomfortable for all the terrorist that Lebanon did not get rid of for 20 years, even though Lebanon claimed they were being intimidated by Syria.
Bikitzur, all the raids they allowed from their country into Israel, and all the rockets they shot at Israel over all these years are greater than the issue of environmental damage.


 Sep 08, 2008 at 02:58 PM MAYER Says:

Gemure avodeh zoro daf bais

"hashem will ask the gentiles what did you do for klal yisroel etc. . . . it is more then 1 daf almost see it your self it pays to look it up.


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