Second round of negotiations to demarcate Lebanon–Israel maritime border held in Lebanon

NAQOURA, Lebanon — On Wednesday, the second round of negotiations between Lebanon and Israel to demarcate their maritime border took place at the U.N. headquarters in Naqoura, Lebanon. U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Ján Kubiš and U.S. Ambassador to Algeria John Desrocher mediated the negotiations.

According to the Lebanese News Agency, the Lebanese delegation carried maps and documents laying out points of disagreement.

The Israeli Energy Ministry said that the aim of these meetings is to consider the possibility of reaching an agreement on the demarcation of the maritime border between the two countries in a way that allows the development of natural resources in the region, and stressed that another meeting is expected on Thursday.

Head of the Hezbollah-partner Shiite Amal Movement and Speaker of Lebanese Parliament Nabih Berri stressed that the demarcation negotiations will help Lebanon establish its rights in the Mediterranean and allow Lebanon to use the wealth to help patch up its collapsing economy.

Berri stressed that the current negotiations will not lead to a normalization of relations with what he described as “the Israeli enemy”, referring to Lebanon’s rejection to join the gulf states that have recently concluded normalization agreements with Israel.

Earlier on Monday, Claudine Aoun, daughter of Syriac Maronite Lebanese President Michel Aoun, repeated the possibility of normalization of relations with Israel on the condition issues between the two neighbors on e.g maritime and land demarcations, natural resources, and Palestinian refugees are resolved.

In an interview on Lebanese Al-Jadeed Claudine Aoun said, “Why should I have an objection [against the signing of peace agreement with Israel],” and, “Must we live in a state of war?”