Lebanon’s parliament speaker Nabih Berri said on Tuesday that Beirut is willing to talk about the demarcation of the border with Israel. However, they do not recognize Israeli claims to Lebanese lands.
“The US has reported after the meeting [with Israeli Prime Minister] Netanyahu in Israel that Israel is willing to make a final decision on the border demarcation on land and at sea,” he added.
Berri noted that Lebanon is ready for negotiations with Israel on the definition of borders and looks forward to a response from Washington on this issue.
According to the politician, the consultations should continue in the Lebanese city of Naqoura, under the aegis of the UN.
At the end of January, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that the so-called Block 9 on the Mediterranean platform belongs to the Jewish state. The Lebanese leadership then made harsh statements against Tel Aviv, classifying such statements as an invasion of the country’s sovereignty.
The disputed territory is where the UN demarked Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. Arguments about Israel’s building of a wall on the spot and Lebanon’s plans to exploit offshore oil and gas in disputed maritime waters have increased tensions between the two countries.
Back in February the tensions between Lebanon and Israel rose after Tel Aviv announced plans to build a wall in disputed territories.
Lebanese General Joseph Aoun said the Lebanese army will use every possible means to deal with potential “Israeli aggression”.
“We again affirm our categorical rejection of the Israeli enemy by violating Lebanon’s sovereignty and its sacred right to exploit all its economic resources,” Aoun told a regional conference, adding that “the army will spare no means available to confront any Israeli aggression, whatever the cost”.
Lebanese authorities have described the Tel Aviv initiative as a “direct threat to stability,” calling on its neighbor to stop construction.