Israel’s New Energy Minister Seeks “Creative Solutions” To Maritime Border Negotiations With Lebanon

Financial Times

The process of maritime border negotiations restarted this week with American mediator John Desrocher holding meetings in both Lebanon and Israel.

The Israeli newly-appointed Energy Minister Karine Elharrar expressed her government readiness to end the maritime border issue with Lebanon. 

Speaking with Desrocher, she stressed the importance of the border negotiations and said Israel was willing to “consider creative solutions” to resolve the dispute, despite the recent change in the premiership.

Desrocher was in Lebanon earlier this week to meet with President Michel Aoun and discuss the latest developments in the negotiations. 

In Baabda Presidential Palace, Aoun expressed his government’s desire to continue the indirect negotiations in Naqoura, stressing that the talks should be fair. “Israel cannot impose a unilateral view on the path of negotiations,” he said.

The indirect talks first started in October but have not made much progress after Lebanon demanded its right for an additional 1,430 square kilometers.

Israel previously blamed Lebanon for changing its position and stated that the demands would lead to a dead-end.

At the time, Israel‘s former Energy Minister had also expressed a desire to meet with Aoun for either open or secret discussions to resolve the border issue.