The fifteenth semi-annual report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1559 (2004) S/2012/244, released on 20 April 2012, provides a comprehensive assessment of the process of implementation of the resolution since the Secretary General last report, issued on 19 October 2012 (S/2011/648).
The Secretary General underlined several provisions included in SCR 1559 that have been implemented. Free and fair presidential and parliamentary elections were held, the Syrian Arab Republic withdrew its troops and diplomatic relations were established between the two countries. Moreover, the President and the Prime Minister continued to affirm respect for all UN resolutions.
Remaining deeply concerned against the background of the escalating crisis in the Syrian Arab Republic, the Secretary-General noted that there has been no concrete progress toward the implementation of the outstanding provisions of SCR 1559, such as the delineation of the Syrian-Lebanese border strongly encouraged by SCR 1680 (2006).
The Secretary-General further reports on the effects of the crisis in the Syrian Arab Republic, which caused more than 10,000 Syrian nationals to cross the border to seek refuge. Cross-border shooting incidents caused by Syrian forces, together with continued occupation and daily aerial intrusions by the Israel Defense Forces resulted in violations of Lebanese sovereignty and SCR 1559 (2004) and 1701 (2006). Several security incidents, due also to illegal arm transfers, illustrate the continuing fragility and vulnerability in which UNIFIL operates, besides restrictions in freedom of movement in its area of operations. The Secretary General consequently stressed the importance of improving the management and control of Lebanon’s land borders in order to prevent illegal flows of weapons to armed groups and improve security within the country.
The Secretary General moreover stressed his deep concern around the political and security consequences of Hizbullah’s military arsenal. He also explained that over the reporting period there has been no tangible progress towards disarming and disbanding of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias called for in SCR 1559 and the Taif Agreement (1989). He stressed his deep concern about the continuing existence of militias directly undermining the right of every citizen to live without fear and physical harm, besides the consolidation of a democratic State and the stability of the country and the region. Despite the President’s intention to reconvene the National Dialogue, aimed at developing a national defense strategy, the Secretary General reported no indication of progress in this direction. No mention was made to women and girls in terms of human rights and inclusion when reporting on DDR and security programs.
Concerning the situation of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, no change was reported, as life conditions remain dire and precarious. Lebanese authorities do not maintain a permanent presence inside the camps, while Palestinian armed groups outside continue to challenge the ability of Lebanon to exercise full sovereignty over its territory. No reference to particular protection and assistance needs of refugee and internally displaced women is included in the report, despite a general call for fundamental improvements in the living conditions of Palestinian refugees.
Overall, the report is characterized by total lack of gender perspective, as there is no specific reference to women and girls.