Congress Resolution on Lebanon

27 July 2007

The 29th Triennial Congress of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, meeting July 21-27, 2007 in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, 

Reaffirms all past WILPF resolutions on the Middle East, in particular, the Cyprus document (1997), Geneva (2000) and Sweden (2004), and, recalling the statement from 25th July 2007; 

Laments that Lebanon, while still in the process of recovery after the 16-year civil war (1975-1990), is now forced to rebuild once more after the devastating 34-day war waged against it by Israel in July-August 2006; 

Recognizes that the unexploded landmines, cluster munitions and all explosive remnants of the war have added to the already enormous and complex problems created by the use of these weapons since 1978. Between January and April 2007, more than 200 people have been injured, including 45 persons under 18, with 26 killed from cluster munitions. What makes cluster bombs so dangerous and heinous is the thirty per cent of the bomblets that do 271 not detonate on impact, but lie waiting for years on roofs, in gardens, in trees, beside roads or in rubbish for a slight disturbance to kill, maim and mutilate children, women and men, the old and the young. Every day the media reports more deaths and wounds arising from the 1.5 million cluster bomblets dropped by Israel on Southern Lebanon. The landmines planted by Israel which were not removed when it withdrew troops in 2002 continue to take lives and limbs, and will continue to do so until Israel provides the maps that will facilitate demining; 

Urges all governments, the EU, the UN and NGOs to intensify demining assistance, and to also provide more human and economic resources for locating and deactivating unexploded cluster bomblets so that daily life can continue in Lebanon; 

Calls on the UN and the international community, civil society and NGOs to put pressure on Israel to release maps detailing the location of landmines in Southern Lebanon so that experts can demine the area; 

Calls for Israel to compensate civilian victims of explosions resulting from the use of cluster bombs; 

Calls on the international community to do all that is in their power to bring about the release of the two Israeli hostages held in Lebanon; 

Calls for an arms embargo and a boycott of Israeli goods created on Palestinian land to be imposed; 

Demands that UN resolution 194 be implemented to guarantee the Palestinians’ right to return to their homeland, a principle outlined in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; 

Calls for the international community to provide impartial objective assistance to Lebanon to achieve a peaceful internal political situation by supporting all internal negotiations/dialogue efforts between the different/differing Lebanese political leaders/parties, so that a national unity government is agreed upon by all; 

Further calls on the international community to support internal negotiations/dialogue efforts between the different/differing Lebanese political leaders/parties so that the Presidential election takes place on time as decreed by the constitution without external interference/imposition; 

Calls on the international community to demand Israeli withdrawal from all occupied Lebanese lands. Calls for all parties to respect the territorial integrity of each country within internationally recognized borders to refrain from all violent acts against the civilian populations, and to work within the principle that all conflicts must be resolved through negotiations among the parties themselves.