Israel, Lebanon to end fighting on Monday
PM of Israel and Lebanon have agreed that cessation of hostilities would enter into force on Aug 14 at 1030 IST.india Updated: Aug 13, 2006 13:31 IST
Guns will stop booming in Lebanon at 1030 IST on Monday after a month-long war, which killed more than 1,000 people and caused $2 billion worth of damage.
The announcement was made on Saturday evening by United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, who had been assigned by the 15-member Security Council to decide, in consultation with the parties, the exact time the "cessation of hostilities" ordered by it should take effect.
Prime Ministers of Israel and Lebanon have agreed that cessation of hostilities and end the fighting would enter into force on August 14 at 1030 IST, Annan said.
The UN Secretary General said he had been in touch with the two leaders to discuss with them the exact date and time when the cessation of hostilities called for the Council would take effect.
He had urged them that the fighting should end immediately to respect the "spirit and intent" of the Council decision, the aim of which was to save civilian lives and to ease the pain and suffering that civilians on both sides were facing.
"So I urged the parties to stop immediately and I would want to assure them the United Nations forces on the ground, UNIFIL, will work with them to implement the agreement and will monitor compliance," he said.
Annan's announcement came as reports from the conflict zone said Israeli forces were pushing ahead with a major offensive to achieve as much of their objective as possible before the fighting halts.
The Lebanese cabinet has already approved the UN resolution and Israeli cabinet is due to take a decision today. Hezbollah has also said it would abide by the resolution.
The conflict broke out between Israel and Hezbollah after the latter kidnapped two Israeli soldiers.
During intensive bombing of Lebanon, Israel destroyed all key infrastructure of Lebanon, including roads, bridges, airports, ports, power transmission and production facilities.