32 UN peacekeepers rescued from Golan militants

2014-08-30 19:43

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Damascus - Thirty-two UN peacekeepers were rescued from Islamist militants who had fired on their post on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights on Saturday, the United Nations said.

Another group of UN soldiers - also from the Philippines - remained trapped by the Islamists who surrounded their positions on Thursday, and a gun battle was ongoing, the UN press office said.

The troops are part of UNDOF, a UN force that has monitored the disengagement zone between Israel and Syria since 1974, after the 1973 Arab-Israeli war.

A Reuters cameraman spotted 11 UN armoured vehicles returning to their base in Israeli-controlled territory about 12 hours after the peacekeepers came under fire at around 06:00 (04:00 GMT) on Saturday.

"All 32 Filipino personnel from this position have been extricated and are now safe," the United Nations press office said in a statement issued in New York.

The remaining troops, at a separate border post, were still under mortar and heavy machine gun fire, the statement said.

"The UN peacekeepers returned fire and prevented the attackers from entering the position," it said. Officials in the Philippines have said there were a total of 72 soldiers trapped in the area.

Another 44 UNDOF peacekeepers, from Fiji, were detained by militants 8km away from the Philippine troops on Thursday and remain missing.

UNDOF has 1 223 peacekeepers from six countries operating in the zone.

The Golan is a strategic plateau captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East War, and Syria and Israel technically remain at war. UNDOF monitors the area of separation, a narrow strip of land running about 70km  from Mount Hermon on the Lebanese border to the Yarmouk River frontier with Jordan.

Read more on:    un  |  undof  |  syria  |  israel

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
6 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.