Lebanon: the Italian peacekeeping success told by General Ugo Cillo, UNIFIL Sector West Commander

(To Maria Grazia Labellarte)

The "Pozzuolo del Friuli Cavalry Brigade" took over the "Sassari" one, to keep on leading the Leonte Operation in the UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon), the UN peacekeeping force in South Lebanon The Sector West Commander is currently Brigadier General Ugo Cillo: The General Cillo has been deployed in the mission, during the last few months. of the Italian recipe to its successful international peacekeeping missions: the civil and military cooperation.

General Ugo Cillo, UNIFIL cooperation since 2006 and based on your professional experience?

My experience in Lebanon dates back to 2006, in the North of Tire during the "Leonte I Operation" as a battalion commander of the Lagunari. At that time, the brigade of "Pozzuolo del Friuli Cavalry" commanded the West Sector, too. After 10 years, I send to Lebanon as commander of the "Pozzuolo", at its fifth send in the land of the cedars. The Civil War UN CIMIC and the reconstruction projects are both a key part of the 1701 UN Resolution. Italy devotes to this area, using the military expertise CIMIC GROUP SOUTH, placed in Motta di Livenza. Since 2006, over 750 CIMIC projects have been implemented, such as roads, schools and hospitals, professional courses and humanitarian aids to disadvantaged people, as well.

What about your unit activities?

The Cavalry Brigade took over the Sector West Command, October last year. During these months we have completed some projects our predecessors (the Sassari Brigade) we have already introduced and we have introduced new ones, such as the redevelopment and energy adjustment 's one in Shama, where the sector is placed, and installing new public lighting . In this project, the national power grid is not always suitable, carried out in other municipalities, we have used

The hospital in Bint Jbail, completing the hospital area with some equipments the Novara Maggiore hospital donated to, and the school in Rmeish where new paving and the stoves have been installed. The Rotary Club of "Rome Campidoglio" donated to. In Buj Ash Shamal, however, we have stocked the local school with new housing furniture. In the town of Bayt Yahoun, we have set out safely and easily. Support for the development of female entrepreneurship has been followed in synergy with the UNIFIL Civil Affair. In this context, we have been promoting in fact the markets organization, where the handicrafts made by southern women's cooperatives are sold. The Lebanon project's list is very long, the health medical care must be added. We have been organizing free medical examinations and medical clinics where our military medical personnel has been deployed.

What about local authorities relationships? how useful has been information sharing?

The relations with the local authorities are always constant. During these two months I have been meeting the highest political, military and political authorities, facilitating the application and UN 1701 resolution 's respect. The Shiite mufti of Tire Sheikh Hassan Abdallah, the Sunni mufti Midrar Saad Eldin Habbal, the Maronite archbishop Skukrallah Nabil Al Haje, the Catholic bishop greek Mikhael El Abrass.
The exchange of information is mutual, there is a great availability and we have worked in harmony, respecting roles and responsibilities. The cooperation in the field of security and reconstruction of common interest, so we have a good interaction with the local communities. A good example is the success of the "trilateral meeting" (at a meeting convened by the Force Commander of UNIFIL to represent the armed forces and the Lebanese armed forces met), a unique comparison tool, which they joined Lebanon and Israel I can do , the force commander first of all, to address security issues, through the mediation of UNIFIL

Have other actors, such as our country NGOs, universities or industry involved in the above mentioned activities?

Certainly yes. Many NGOs, associations, non-profit and cultural realities offered an important contribution in the implementation of civil-military cooperation initiatives. Universities too have expressed their interest in the contingent activities, Pozzuolo del Friuli Brigade has a long-standing collaboration with the University of Trieste and the University of Udine. There are ongoing collaborative projects with universities in the South of Lebanon with the second one.

What are the projects involved in the population coupled with assistance to the vulnerable groups and the road infrastructure?

The Italian contingent has been organizing some initiatives such as road and domestic safety, professional courses and Italian language one. We also organized a cooking class in Maraaka, this was attended by five other municipalities successfully, involving the women's community cooperation. Road safety, safety and safety in the field. Too much organized meetings on food preservation and prevention from food poisoning, involving our veterinarians too. Other activities involved in the sport as the Inter Campus. Based on sport values ​​with educational and recreational activities Campus has taken place for many years by now, in south Lebanon.

If you could change your activity, what would you do with your health, education and social environment?

In my opinion, a balanced and coherent approach has been adopted in the management of interventions, in favor of the population. In fact, in the projects are fulfilled in agreement with local authorities on the basis of their demands and reflect on fair balance among the different needs.