independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Christmas traditions to the fore in Lebanon

FOR the soldiers on duty in the Lebanon, Christmas will start with Christmas Eve Mass celebrated by the Chaplain, Fr. David Tyndall at 9.00pm.

Christmas Day Mass is then celebrated in the outposts located close to the Israeli border for the Irish personnel serving with the UN.

A long-standing tradition is maintained as the Commanding Officer and the Comissioned Officers serve Christmas dinner to the soldiers.

The operational patrolling and duties will continue.

The Irish area of operations measures some 140 square kilometers from Tibnin in the North to the Blue Line along the border with Israel.

Duties include monitoring the Blue Line, supporting the Lebonese Armed Forces and assisting the people of Lebanon.

Within the Irish area of operations this involves the protection of civilians, humanitarian support and extensive mobile patrolling in co-operation with the Lebonese Armed Forces.

All this will be combined with plenty of calls between Ireland and the Lebanon, where Christmas messages will be exchanged between loved ones.

There will also be a commemoration to remember the sacrifices of fallen comrades who died in the area of operations in the Lebanon.

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