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Lebanese Government Unanimously Accepts UN Resolution

The Lebanese Government has unanimously accepted a U.N. Resolution that calls on Israel and Hezbollah to cease hostilities following a month of fighting that has left more than 1,000 Lebanese and over 120 Israelis dead.

The Cabinet met for more than four hours late Saturday. Following the meeting, Information Minister Ghazi Aridi announced that the resolution was accepted unanimously. He says there were some reservations and objections, but they would not affect the implementation of the resolution. The Cabinet plans to meet Sunday to discuss the implementation.

Aridi went on to criticize Israel, saying it does not respect ethics, international resolutions, laws, and human values. He said Israel insists on practicing what he called organized terrorism, defying the entire world and killing women and children. He says, after the issuance of the U.N. Resolution, the Cabinet considers Israel's continued terrorist practices the responsibility of the entire international community, especially the responsibility of those who wanted and still want to protect Israel.

The government's acceptance of the resolution came just hours after Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah made a televised addressed on al-Manar, the Hezbollah television channel. Nasrallah said Hezbollah would not be an obstacle to any government decision, but its ministers in the government would express their reservations about some parts of the resolution Hezbollah considers unjust and unfair. Among them, he says is that the resolution holds Hezbollah responsible for setting off the month-long conflict.

In a cross-border raid on July 12, Hezbollah fighters kidnapped two soldiers from Israel, which triggered the Israeli offensive into Lebanon.

But the Hezbollah chief warned that fighting would continue until all Israeli forces leave Lebanon, which could be weeks from now.

The U.N. Security Council on Friday unanimously adopted Resolution 1701 seeking a "full cessation" of hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah on Friday. The resolution calls for Israeli forces to withdraw from positions they have occupied in southern Lebanon in parallel with the deployment of some 15,000 Lebanese soldiers and an international force of 15,000 troops to south Lebanon.