Lebanon-Israel Talks Were Almost Moved To Europe

Lebanon-Israel Talks Were Almost Moved To Europe

Since the border demarcation talks between Lebanon and Israel came to a temporary halt, there have been attempts to move the negotiation site abroad, a Lebanese official has revealed.

The indirect talks to resolve the maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel have been stagnant ever since their postponement at the request of the U.S. mediatory delegation, back in November.

The negotiation sessions that took place between October 14th and November 30th were all held at the headquarters of UNIFIL in Naqoura, South Lebanon. 

A UNIFIL helicopter hovering above troops.

However, the location of the negotiations was almost changed recently, according to MP Yassine Jaber, who told Al-Anbaa newspaper that Lebanon was able to “return the negotiations to Naqoura after they tried to transfer it to Geneva or Paris…”

“… We did well in keeping the negotiations in Naqoura, and this is a good thing, and it is necessary for the Military Commission to take its time to prepare its files,” he explained.

Notably, Israel has blamed Lebanon for the lack of progress in the negotiations that became apparent before their postponement, especially through the Israeli Energy Minister’s remarks alleging that the Lebanese side had changed its stance on the demarcation many times.

Lebanese Army convoy.
REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently offered to mediate the negotiations, based on the respective maritime claims that Israel and Lebanon previously deposited at the United Nations.

However, Lebanon has denied having deposited its maritime claim at the U.N.

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