Israel, Lebanon Satisfied With ‘Historic’ Maritime Border Deal
Israel and Lebanon have expressed satisfaction with the latest incarnation of an agreement to define their shared maritime border in the Eastern Mediterranean, news outlets said Tuesday.
The chief negotiators from both sides called the agreement a “historic deal.”
The agreement comes after years of delicate negotiations under the auspices of the US and potentially clears the way for both countries to begin new gas exploration in that area.
“If everything goes well, [US envoy] Amos Hochstein’s efforts could imminently lead to a historic deal,” the Reuters news agency quoted chief Lebanese negotiator Bou Saab as saying.
His Israeli counterpart, National Security Adviser Eyal Hulata, said in a statement: “All our demands were met, the changes that we asked for were corrected. We protected Israel’s security interests and are on our way to a historic agreement.”
The draft deal proposed by Hochstein aims to settle competing claims over the offshore Qana gas field. Under the US-brokered plan, Lebanon would have control over the area north of Line 23 on the sea map, including most of the Qana offshore natural gas field, while Israel would remain in control of the Karish gas field south of the line.