Accessibility links

Breaking News

Rice Meets Siniora in Paris, Stresses US Support For Lebanon

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has met with Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora for talks on developments in his country.

A State Department spokesman, Sean McCormack, says Rice used the talks in Paris Tuesday to underscore U.S. support for Mr. Siniora's government in its political and economic reform efforts.

The spokesman says Rice also stressed continued U.S. support for the Lebanese government as it confronts the threat posed by violent extremism.

Mr. Siniora is in Paris for talks with new French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Sunday in Lebanon, six U.N. peacekeepers of a Spanish contingent were killed in a car bomb explosion. Three were from Colombia.

A state funeral was held for the slain peacekeepers Tuesday outside Madrid.

Spain's Crown Prince Felipe, dressed in full military regalia, and Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero were among the officials attending the service.

Relatives of the three Colombian soldiers displayed a large Colombian flag. The Colombian troops were part of Spain's 1,100-member contingent of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, known as UNIFIL.

A Spanish Judge, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, has opened an investigation into the deaths. He ordered that the men's bodies not be cremated until the probe is complete.

The bombing Sunday was the first deadly attack on the UNIFIL troops since the force was expanded last year following the war between Israel and Hezbollah fighters in southern Lebanon.

The U.N. force has some 13,000 troops and patrols an area along the Lebanese-Israeli border.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.