Security Council renews mandate of UN's Israel-Syria observer mission
The Security Council today unanimously adopted a resolution renewing for another six months the mandate of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), which has been monitoring a ceasefire between Israel and Syria since 1974.
In a statement read out afterwards by its current President, Ambassador Alfonso Valdivieso of Colombia, the Council said that it concurred with the view of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who wrote in his latest report on UNDOF that "the situation in the Middle East is very tense and is likely to remain so, unless and until a comprehensive settlement covering all aspects of the Middle East problem can be reached."
Mr. Annan also observed in his report, which was released yesterday, that although the area "has remained generally quiet," the region is volatile, and under the prevailing circumstances, UNDOF's continued presence is "essential."
Both Syria and Israel have agreed to the extension, which carries the Force through 30 June 2003.