Lebanese government: Hezbollah’s start of marches on Karish is “unacceptable”

On Monday, the Lebanese government considered any action outside the framework of the negotiations “unacceptable” in US-mediated course to mark the maritime border with Israel, two days after Hezbollah launched three marches to the Karish gas field.

Foreign Minister Abdullah Bu Habib said in a statement following his meeting with interim Prime Minister Najib Mikati that “any action outside the framework of state responsibilities and the diplomatic context in which negotiations take place, is unacceptable and exposes you to unnecessary risks. “He stressed that the negotiations in course with the efforts of the American mediator, Amos Hochstein, “have reached advanced stages”, inviting all parties to “show a spirit of high national responsibility and abide by the foregoing, and stated that everyone without exception is behind the state in the negotiation process “.

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Recently, developments related to the practice of demarcating maritime borders with Israel have accelerated after a halt following the arrival of a production and storage vessel near the Karish field, which Beirut believed to be located. in a disputed area, in view of the beginning of the extraction of gas from it. And Hezbollah announced on Saturday “the launch of three unarmed marches of different sizes towards thearea disputed Karish camp to carry out reconnaissance missions. “The Israeli army, in turn, confirmed its objection. On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said that Hezbollah” undermines Lebanon’s ability to reach an agreement on maritime borders “. The negotiations started between the two parties in 2020 with the American mediation were suspended in May last year due to differences on thearea ofarea contention.

Initially, the talks should have been limited to onearea estimated maritime in 860 square kilometers, whose borders are defined by line 23, based on a map sent by Lebanon in 2011 to the United Nations. But Lebanon in later found the map to be based on erroneous estimates and demanded that an additional 1,430 square kilometers be searched, including parts of the Karish field, known as Line 29. Following the arrival of the gas extraction platform off the Israeli coast, Lebanon has invited Hochstein to resume negotiations and has presented a new offer to demarcate the border, but it does not refer to the Karish camp. Hochstein took the Lebanese offer to Israel. Lebanon and Israel are officially in war. In 2006, Hezbollah, which enjoys great political influence in Lebanon fought a bloody war against Israel that lasted 33 days.