Sunday, October 2, 2022

Lebanon says receives US proposal on maritime border with Israel

Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Saturday received a written proposal from U.S. energy envoy Amos Hochstein on the maritime border demarcation between Lebanon and Israel, Lebanon's Presidency said in a statement.

Aoun has consulted with Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri and caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati on how to provide the U.S. mediator with Lebanon's response "as soon as possible," the statement said.

The president said in September that indirect border demarcation talks with Israel had reached the "final stages," and the deal would guarantee Lebanon's rights to oil and gas exploration.

Lebanese authorities are trying to end a dispute with Israel over maritime borders that has escalated since Israel sent on June 5 a vessel to the Karish field, which Israel claims is within its economic zone but Lebanon says in disputed waters.

Lebanon aims to start oil and gas exploration to save the country from a deep financial crisis that has plunged more than 80 percent of the population into poverty.

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