World Lebanon: a clean-up operation begins in a nature reserve after an oil spill in Israel
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The Tire reserve is affected by the equivalent of two tons of tar, according to the Lebanese National Council for Scientific Research.
Equipped with rakes and shovels, volunteers from a civil defense association and residents began cleaning up a coastal nature reserve in southern Lebanon, Saturday February 27, after a major oil spill at the Israeli neighbor. The Hebrew state, with which Lebanon is officially at war, announced a week ago that a ship had dumped "tens to hundreds of tons" of bitumen on its coast, according to initial indications.
The ecological drama has spread to southern Lebanon, where tar is visible along the coastline from the border town of Naqoura to Tire, further north. This area, one of the most unspoiled on the Lebanese coast, is home to many sandy beaches and is particularly considered an important site for sea turtles. It is spread over 3.8 km² of land and 113 km² of marine surface.
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Although Israel is in the midst of an election campaign, Netanyahu's challengers are toeing his line on the nuclear deal.Whatever the reason, one item discussed on the call has become urgent: what to do about Iran's nuclear program, and whether or not the U.S. should rejoin the current agreement. The imperativeness of the conversation between the two leaders is underscored by Iran's announcement that as of February 23rd it would stop the voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol that allowed for snap inspections of Iranian nuclear facilities.
An important site for marine turtles
"The Tire reserve is affected by the equivalent of two tonnes of tar, 90% of which is now hidden in the sand", lamented Mouïn Hamza, secretary general of the National Research Council scientist, came to encourage the participants. The clean-up operations could last between one to two weeks, he assured AFP, praising "the significant effort (...) and the enthusiasm" of young people and residents.
Mouïn Hamza had already mentioned, Thursday, a risk of seeing the sea throw oil on the coasts "for two or three months". Authorities have launched a damage assessment, including with drone footage, but it will take time to arrive at a final assessment. Reporting "very significant damage" in the regions of Naqoura and Bayada, in the south, he assured that residues were also found on a beach in Beirut, a hundred kilometers further north.
Biden admin: International Criminal Court 'unfairly' targeting Israel .
The Biden administration opposes and is disappointed with the decision by the International Criminal Court to pursue an investigation into alleged Israeli war crimes in the Palestinian territories, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said on Wednesday.Affirming U.S. support for Israel, Price said the ICC has "no jurisdiction over this matter," which he said "unfairly" targets the Jewish State."Israel is not a party to the ICC, and it has not consented to the court's jurisdiction and we have serious concerns about the ICC's attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel," Price said, and echoed the U.S.