Tension felt between IDF, UN troops

Official: Navy approached UNIFIL ships unannounced; IAF flying suspiciously.

france unifil 298 88 (photo credit: AP)
france unifil 298 88
(photo credit: AP)
In the past two weeks, three incidents have taken place in southern Lebanon between UNIFIL's (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) navy and IDF forces, a spokesperson for the German security forces in Lebanon said Friday evening. According to the spokesperson, the latest incident occurred in the last few days, when IAF fighters approached a German naval ship patrolling the Lebanese coast. The report states that the planes were flying in an unusual manner. In addition to the IAF flyby, the spokesperson said that on April 30 an IDF ship approached a German naval ship near the coast of Lebanon. Because the IDF ship did not announce itself, the German ship began battle procedures. One day earlier, a similar incident occurred, where an IDF ship approached a Swedish ship which was also part of the UNIFIL force. Complications between IDF forces and UNIFIL forces are nothing new. In October, Israeli jets fired in the air over a German intelligence-gathering ship off Lebanon's coast. Soon thereafter, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert apologized to German Chancellor Angela Merkel for the incident and thanked Germany for its contribution to the international force in southern Lebanon.