Italy's parliament approves Lebanon mission

October 17, 2006 21:13

Italy's upper house of Parliament on Tuesday approved the country's peacekeeping commitment in southern Lebanon, the last parliamentary hurdle before the president signs the decree. Italy is contributing the largest contingent - 2,500 troops - to the UN's expanded peacekeeping force in southern Lebanon. The mission was approved by a large margin - 272-15, with two abstentions. The Chamber of Deputies had already approved the mission last month. About 1,000 Italian troops have already been deployed and have taken control of a 260-sq. kilometer sector reaching along the coast from the Israeli border to the Litani river. Italy's Cabinet approved the mission in late August, allowing the troops to deploy. However, the government decree required parliamentary approval to stay in effect past Oct. 27.

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