On Wednesday, Lebanese President Michel Aoun discussed with a senior US official the “future directions” in the file of indirect negotiations with Israel over the demarcation of the maritime borders.
This came during his meeting with the US State Department’s Senior Adviser for Energy Security, Amos Hochstein, the new mediator in the negotiation process for the demarcation of the southern maritime border, at Baabda Palace, east of Beirut, according to a statement by the Lebanese presidency.
The statement stated that “the two sides presented the course of the negotiation process regarding the demarcation of the maritime borders and the future directions in this file,” without mentioning additional details in this regard.
The US official also met Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, according to what was published by the National News Agency.
According to the source, Berri said: “We are facing a new opportunity to resume negotiations in Naqoura, with the new American efforts being made in this context.”
Hochstein met with Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati and Army Commander Joseph Aoun, according to the same source, and the meetings dealt with the same file.
In October 2020, negotiations began between Lebanon and Israel under the auspices of the United Nations and the United States, where five rounds of talks were held, the last of which was on May 4.
During one of the talks’ sessions, the Lebanese delegation presented a new map that pushes an additional 1,430 km to Lebanon, which Israel rejects, while negotiations are still pending since then.
The area of the disputed area is 860 km, according to maps deposited by Lebanon and Israel with the United Nations, but the Lebanese negotiating delegation says that the disputed area is 2,290 km.