Friday, August 15, 2008

'UN agency reports progress on cluster bombs in southern Lebanon'

By Editors ∙ Palestinian Information Center ∙ August 15, 2008

BEIRUT, (PIC)-- The United Nations agency responsible for clearing mines in southern Lebanon said on Thursday that it has dealt with half the cluster bombs dropped by the Israeli airforce on southern Lebanon two years ago.

The report of the UN Mine Action Coordination Centre of South Lebanon, published on Thursday, states that an estimated area of 40 square kilometers of land became contaminated with hundreds of thousands of unexploded cluster munitions, which have so far killed 20 people and maimed 194 others.

Whole villages were covered with unexploded cluster bombs according to the report, which posed great danger to the lives of the villagers and affected their economy as most of them depended on agriculture for their livelihood and with their field infested with these bombs there were great economic losses.

Two years ago Israel launched a 34-day war against Lebanon in retaliation for Hizbullah's capture of two Israeli soldiers. In the last 72 hours leading to the ceasefire, the Israeli airforce dropped 4 million cluster bombs over southern Lebanon, 500,000 of them failed to explode, putting the lives of the local population at great risk.

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