코피 아난 유엔 사무총장은 유럽과 다른 지역에서 파병되는 1만 5천명의 국제 평화 유지군이 레바논에 곧 배치될것으로 확신한다고 말했습니다.

코피 아난 총장은 25일 벨기에의 수도 브뤠셀에서 이날 가질 유럽 연합 외무장관들과 회의가 좋은 출발이 되길 기대한다며 당초 요청했던 1만 5천명의 병력을 최종적으로 달성할 것으로 낙관한다고 말했습니다.

앞서 회의에서 프랑스는 파병 규모를 2천명으로 증가했습니다. 프랑스는 유엔 평화유지군과 함께 레바논에 이미 파병돼있는 4백명의 병력에 25일 150명의 추가 병력을 합류시킬 예정입니다.

이탈리아는 최고 3천명의 병력 파병을 제의했으며 폴란드와 스페인을 포함한 여러 유럽 국가들이 이날 브뤠셀 회의에서 파병 규모를 밝힐 것으로 예상되고 있습니다.

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U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan says he is confident a 15,000 member peacekeeping force will deploy soon in Lebanon to oversee the cease fire between Israel and Hezbollah.

Mr. Annan is meeting Friday in Brussels with European Union foreign ministers. He said ahead of that meeting that he feels certain he will get the required number of troops.

France's President Jacques Chirac said Friday that the peacekeeping force does not need 15,000 troops. He called that number excessive.

On Thursday, France boosted its troop commitment to 2,000. A contingent of about 150 French troops reached southern Lebanon at the coastal town of Naqura today.

Italy has offered up to 3,000 troops. Several other European countries, including Poland and Spain, are expected to make a troop commitment.

Still at issue is who will command the troops. France says it wants to take the lead but Italy does too. In newspaper interviews Friday, Italian officials proposed a shared command.

In Paris, Mr. Chirac called Israel's air and sea blockade of Lebanon unjustified.

Israel has said it will maintain the blockade until international troops are patrolling Lebanon's borders.

The U.N. Security Council resolution on ending the month-long war between Israel and Hezbollah calls for a force of up to 15,000 international troops in southern Lebanon. They will combine with the same number of Lebanese army soldiers.

The U.S. State Department has condemned Syria's suggestion that the deployment of U.N. peacekeepers along its border with Lebanon would be a hostile act.

Washington accuses Syria of allowing its territory to be used for the shipment of Iranian weaponry to Hezbollah.