Concerned at fighting in Lebanon, Ban Ki-moon calls for protection of civilians

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today spoke out against the fighting Lebanon and called on all sides to protect civilians.

Mr. Ban "is gravely concerned about the fighting in the last two days between Fatah el-Islam gunmen and the Lebanese army," his spokesperson said in a statement.

"The actions of Fatah al-Islam are an attack on Lebanon's stability and sovereignty," Michele Montas told reporters in New York.

The Secretary-General welcomed the "united stand taken by Palestinian factions in Lebanon denouncing these attacks on the Lebanese army" and called on all sides to do their utmost to protect innocent civilians.

"The Secretary-General also strongly condemns yesterday's terrorist bombing in Beirut," the statement said, urging the Lebanese "to unite in the face of threats to their stability and security."