The Lebanese Canadian Coordinating Council (LCCC)

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July 31/ ‎‏2006‏
For Immediate Release

Qana massacre should be an incentive for a comprehensive international military intervention to save Lebanon from the devastating status quo of fanaticism and illegal armed militias

We offer our most sincere condolences to the relatives and families of the Lebanese civilian victims who died yesterday in the Southern Lebanese town of Qana, after the building they were taking sanctuary in became a target for military bombardments in the middle of a bloody war that has been raging for the past three weeks between Israel and Hezbollah. We pray for the dead asking Almighty God to have mercy on their souls, for their bereaved relatives and families to grant them the needed faith and courage to deal with their losses, and for the prompt recovery of the wounded. We declare our full solidarity with our people who are subjected, as we speak, to imminent danger at this moment of the history of Lebanon. Our homeland, Lebanon has been transformed by terrorist and fundamentalist organizations into a war arena for the execution of plans and designs dictated by their sponsors in Tehran and Damascus.

We call on the United Nations that have peacekeeping troops in south Lebanon to set a special inquiry commission with the mandate to look thoroughly into the Qana disaster from all aspects and pinpoint all its precipitating and predisposing factors, as well as its perpetrators.

We take this sad opportunity to renew our group's appeal to all countries involved directly or indirectly in the current Lebanese Israeli bloody conflict and encourage them to come up with a comprehensive, urgent, fair and sustainable solution within the framework of UN resolution 1559 and all its corollaries. We urge the enforcement of all their remaining clauses of 1559 through a UN multinational deterrent force. These deterrent troops need not to deploy only in the south, but also on the Syrian-Lebanese border to interdict the influx of weapons from Syria.

Despite all the pain, anguish, sorrow and anger that it has inflicted on the Lebanese people, the latest Qana disaster should not mask in any way the actual disease that lead to its occurrence. The Qana incident, as well as many other similar ones, are mere symptoms of the main devastating disease that has been entrapping Lebanon as a prey and a victim for the past 28 years. This cancerous disease is rooted in the fact that Hezbollah and numerous similar Palestinian radical armed militias have erected during the Syrian occupation era (1976-1990) more than sixteen outlaw mini-states inside Lebanon where the legitimate government could not exercise its sovereignty. They have infringed not only on the state's sovereignty, independence, foreign relations, resources, institutions and constitution, but also on the Lebanese people's freedom, safety, rights and decision-making process.

Hezbollah, who has instigated the Qana incident as well as the ongoing devastating war, is an Iranian military appendage in Lebanon. Its affiliation with the Mullas of Iran is organic: ideological, financial, logistical, organizational, and decision-making. Since its creation in 1982, this fundamentalist group has been and is still serving Iranian-Syrian interests and their evil expansionism schemes.

We call on the UN Security Council, which is in the process of issuing a new presidential statement addressing the Israeli-Hezbollah war, to add to it two clauses:
1 - One that will force the Lebanese government to facilitate the safe and secure return of all the current displaced Lebanese citizens to their homes and towns, including the unconditional and dignified return of thousands of Southern Lebanese citizens who took refuge in Israel in May 2000 in fear for their lives from Hezbollah retaliation after Israeli troops withdraw from their villages. These peace-loving people must return with honor, and be compensated for all losses and all false and fabricated judicial cases brought against them by the Lebanese government.

2 - The second clause should address the status of hundreds of Lebanese nationals who have been brutally and illegally detained in Syria's notorious jails for decades without any judicial justification or due process. Their case should be attached to any Hezbollah-Israeli future exchange of prisoners and hostages. It is time to force Baathist Syria to unconditionally release all the Lebanese prisoners it holds.

For the LCCC
Chairman/Elias Bejjani
Coordinator/Toni Mouannes

*The lccc is the Federal umbrella for the following nonprofit municipal, provincial and federal Canadian registered groups:
Canadian Lebanese Human Rights Federation,  (CLHRF),  Canadian Lebanese Free Patriotic Movement (FPM-Canada), Phoenician Club of Mississauga (PCOM),Canadian Phoenician Community Services Club (CPCSC),Canadian Lebanese Christian Heritage Club (CLCHC),World Lebanese Cultural Union (WLCU)-Canadian Chapter.