UNIFIL Denies it is Involved in Search for Estonians

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon denied on Saturday media reports that peacekeepers had carried out a joint operation with security forces in Rashaya al-Fekhar in search for the kidnapped Estonian tourists.

“UNIFIL does not carry out any operation outside its area of operations that falls south of the Litani river,” UNIFIL spokesman Neeraj Singh said in remarks carried by the state-run National News Agency.

He said that U.N. peacekeepers do not carry out joint operations with the Internal Security Forces.

The seven Estonian men, in their 30s and early 40s, were kidnapped at gunpoint in the eastern Bekaa Valley last month after entering Lebanon through Syria on their bicycles.

“UNIFIL has nothing to do with any operation linked to the search for the missing Estonians,” Singh said.