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The U.N. Security Council on Wednesday issued a statement strongly condemning "armed elements" of the Syrian opposition for holding four peacekeepers in the Golan Heights.
"The members of the Security Council strongly condemned the detention of four United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) peacekeepers from the Philippine Battalion within the Area of Limitation in the vicinity of Al Jamla," the press statement said, referring to the area where the peacekeepers were monitoring a 1974 cease-fire agreement between Syria and Israel.
The 15 member council also demanded their "unconditional and immediate release" and called on the parties "to cooperate with UNDOF in good faith."
The four were detained on Tuesday while out on patrol. They are still being detained, but there are indications that "the four peacekeepers have not been harmed and efforts are still underway to secure their release," U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon's spokesman, Martin Nesirky, told reporters at a briefing Wednesday.
The latest incident follows the abduction of 21 UNDOF peacekeepers, also from the Philippines, on March 6, who were later released.