The United States hopes for a quick start to the talks

An agreement to negotiate the demarcation of the borders between Lebanon and Israel ... and Washington welcomes

  • Berri, to his left Aker and Cole, and to his right, Joseph Aoun, in a group photo after yesterday's press conference.

  • Mike Pompeo: "The agreement is the fruit of relentless diplomatic efforts that lasted about three years."


The Speaker of the Lebanese Parliament, Nabih Berri, announced in a press conference yesterday the agreement on a framework for negotiating the demarcation of the border between Lebanon and Israel, while Washington welcomed that step, and the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, described the agreement as "historic", and indicated that it is " A very important step that serves the interests of Lebanon, Israel, the region and the United States, ”he said, expressing his hope for a speedy start to the talks.

Berri said at a press conference attended by the head of the UNIFIL mission, Stefano Del Col, the Lebanese Minister of Defense Zeina Aker, and the Commander of the Lebanese Armed Forces, General Joseph Aoun: “What I will make is a framework agreement that charts the way for the Lebanese negotiator to be undertaken by the Lebanese army, and after today my work ends. I hope success for Lebanon and everyone ».

He added, "The borders of the south will be demarcated based on the positive experience existing since the April 1996 Understanding, and in accordance with Resolution 1701, and with regard to the maritime borders, continuous meetings will be held under the auspices of the United Nations Special Coordinator," pointing out that the meetings will be held at the United Nations headquarters in Naqoura, under its auspices. And under the United Nations flag, the two paths coincide on land and sea.

Berri added, "I personally started in 2010 asking the United Nations to demarcate the maritime borders and draw a white line in the blue Mediterranean," noting that "the visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Lebanon, last year, brought the border demarcation file back to life."

He pointed out that "the United States realizes that the governments of Lebanon and Israel are ready to demarcate their maritime borders based on the experience of the tripartite mechanism that has existed since the April 1996 understandings, and currently under Resolution 1701."

He declared that "the United States has been asked to act as a mediator for demarcating maritime borders, and it is ready for that. When the demarcation is finally agreed upon, the maritime boundary demarcation agreement will be deposited with the United Nations, in accordance with international law and relevant treaties."

He added, "The United States intends to exert its utmost efforts in order to successfully manage and conclude the negotiations as soon as possible, and if the demarcation succeeds, there is a very large scope, especially with regard to Blocks 8 and 9, for it to be one of the reasons for paying Lebanon's debts."

In a statement, UNIFIL forces welcomed the announcement of the framework agreement to launch negotiations between Lebanon and Israel on demarcating the borders between the two countries.

The statement said, "UNIFIL is ready to provide all possible support to the parties and facilitate efforts to solve this issue."

The statement added that "UNIFIL", and within the framework of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, supports any agreement between the two countries, in a way that enhances confidence, and motivates the parties to commit again to respecting the Blue Line and the wider border demarcation process.

In addition, the United States welcomed yesterday the agreement it described as "historic" between Lebanon and Israel to start talks on border disputes between them.

And the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said in a statement that this agreement was "the result of relentless diplomatic efforts that lasted about three years."

He added, "The agreement between the two sides on a common framework for maritime negotiations will allow the two countries to initiate talks that would lead to more stability, security and prosperity for the Lebanese and Israelis alike."

He pointed out that the agreement is "a very important step that serves the interests of Lebanon, Israel, the region, and the United States," expressing his hope for a speedy start of talks on the maritime borders.

On the other hand, Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said yesterday that Israel and Lebanon will hold talks with US mediation to end the dispute over the maritime borders between the two countries.

He said in a statement that the talks are expected to take place after the ninth of October.

It is noteworthy that Lebanon is facing a dispute over the demarcation of its exclusive economic zone, with Israel, and the disputed area is about 860 square kilometers, and Lebanon demands the United Nations to seek to demarcate the maritime border area and the disputed exclusive economic zone.

The southern international borders coincide with the Blue Line, which is the withdrawal line established by the United Nations in 2000 to verify the Israeli withdrawal, in a large part of it, and there are differences in a number of places, so Lebanon maintains the Blue Line in these areas.

Nabih Berri:

"The framework agreement charts the path for the Lebanese negotiator, and the army will take it over."

- The meetings take place at the United Nations headquarters in Naqoura .. and they follow the two tracks, by land and sea.

UNIFIL forces welcomed the announcement of the agreement and affirmed their readiness to provide all possible support.

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