FRENCH FM HEADS TO UN TO SEEK LEBANON DEAL
Fri Aug 11, 5:54 AM ET
PARIS (AFP) - France's foreign minister will leave for the United Nations in New York to try to secure an agreement on a resolution
on the Lebanon conflict, the ministry
"Foreign Minister Philippe
Douste-Blazy will travel today to the UN Security Council in New York, along with several
of his counterparts, to take part in discussions and try to secure a rapid agreement on a draft resolution on the Middle East crisis", said foreign ministry spokesman Denis Simmonneau Friday.
France and the United States
have been deadlocked over the wording of a new UN resolution, after an earlier draft was rejected by Lebanon and Arab leaders.
The United States has been backing Israel's demand that its troops remain in southern Lebanon until an international force arrives, fearing that Hezbollah militias could
retake control of the border zone.
France had wanted a resolution
to incorporate Lebanese demands that Israeli troops leave as soon as fighting stops, but Wednesday it proposed Israel be allowed
to carry out a phased withdrawal once a truce is reached.