Last updated on: 6/26/2008 2:42:00 PM PST

What Is the Dispute over Shebaa Farms?



General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
Benny Morris, PhD, Professor of History at Ben-Gurion University, in his 2001 book Righteous Victims, described the dispute over the Shabaa Farms:

"U.N. officials and the Security Council (on June 18 [2000]) confirmed that Israel had withdrawn back to the exact contours of the international demarcation line agreed upon by British and French officials in 1923 [same as U.N. Blue Line], in compliance with Security Council Resolution 425... But the Hizbullah, backed by Syria, raised objections to Israel's continued retention of some 20 square kilometers of territory in the Shab'a Farms or Har Dov area, at the northeastern edge of the frontier, where Israel, Lebanon and Syria meet. Israel had seized the area in 1967-1969 in the aftermath of the Six Day War and as part of its campaign against the PLO in the Arqoub, which Har Dov dominates

Israel claims that the land is Syrian, and therefore its to retain until -- and if -- it gives back the Golan Heights to Syria; Syria and Lebanon argue that the Shab'a Farms are Lebanese territory, 'loaned' before 1967, to Syria. The Hizbullah maintains that Israel has not completed its withdrawal from Lebanon so long as it remains in the Shab'a Farms -- and therefore it still has the right and duty to fight on."

2001 - Benny Morris, PhD 

The United Nations (UN), in paragraph five of the Jan. 22, 2001 Report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (for the period from July 18, 2000 to Jan. 18, 2001) read as follows:

"Last May [2000], when the United Nations identified the Blue Line [see Map] for the purpose of confirming the Israeli withdrawal, the Shab'a farms area was left outside the Blue Line on grounds that are described in detail in the Secretary-General's report of 22 May 2000 (S/2000/460, paras. 11-19). Subsequently, the Governments of Israel and Lebanon, notwithstanding certain reservations, confirmed that they would respect the line as identified by the United Nations. In resolution 1310 (2000), the Security Council called on the parties to respect that line. Since last November [2000], the Government of Lebanon has asserted that the Blue Line is not valid in the Shab'a farms area and has claimed the right to use every means, including force, against the Israeli forces occupying it."

Jan. 22, 2001 - United Nations (UN)