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UN calls for immediate release of Fijian men

Nasik Swami
Saturday, August 30, 2014

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has condemned the detention of 43 Fijian soldiers serving in the Golan Heights by armed elements and called for their immediate release.

Mr Ban reminded all actors involved that the UN Disengagement Observer Force is mandated to monitor the Disengagement of Forces Agreement between Israel and Syria.

The head of the UN in a statement said all parties to respect UNDOF's freedom of movement and safety and security.

The members of the UN Security Council has also demanded the unconditional and immediate release of all the detained UN peacekeepers and called upon all parties to co-operate with UNDOF in good faith to enable it to operate freely and to ensure full security of its personnel.

"Council called on countries with influence to strongly convey to the armed members of the opposition in the UNDOF area of operation to immediately release the peacekeepers," a UN statement said.

The council confirmed UN was making every effort to secure the release of the detained peacekeepers, and to restore full freedom of movement of the force throughout its area of operation

UNDOF peacekeepers were previously detained by armed elements in March and May of 2013 and were released safely.

As of July 31, 2014, there are 1223 peacekeepers from six countries — Fiji, India, Ireland, Nepal, Netherlands, and the Philippines — serving in the war-torn country under UNDOF.

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