Historic deal between Israel-Lebanon: Terms, significance

Analysts expect the deal to create new sources of energy and revenue for both countries, the report said

Israel has announced a ‘historic’ deal with Lebanon to resolve a long-standing maritime border dispute over the Mediterranean Sea. The move comes at a time when the two countries not only have no official diplomatic ties, but are technically at war. Analysts believe that the agreement will ease tensions between the two countries.

What does the contract mean?

The deal aims to resolve a dispute between Israel and Lebanon over offshore gas fields in the region. The agreement was drafted by Amos J. Hochstein, Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs and Head of the US State Department’s Bureau of Energy Resources (ENR).

”All our needs were met. We have made the requested changes. We have protected Israel’s security interests. “We are moving toward a historic agreement,” Israel’s national security adviser and key negotiator Eyal Hulata said in a statement, The Times of Israel reported.

Israel’s statement came shortly after Lebanese Prime Minister Elias Bou Saab said the deal had resolved the country’s previous concerns. ”The latest draft covers all of Lebanon’s requirements. We think the other side should feel the same way,” Saab told Archyde.com news agency.

The border dispute between the two countries related to the Mediterranean Sea is more than a decade old. In 2011, both countries had declared that the other side had encroached on their border. Since the two countries are technically at war, the United Nations has been asked to mediate the issue.

The issue gained importance when Israel discovered two gas fields off its coast a decade ago. Experts believe that these fields will help transform Israel into an energy exporter.

What does the contract do?

Israel is already producing natural gas from nearby fields. What the deal does, however, is resolve a dispute over an area where Lebanon wants to explore for natural gas in the eastern Mediterranean.

The suspected gas-bearing area is located in the maritime boundary between the two countries. The agreement will allow both countries to receive royalties from the gas. It brings a border for the first time in the maritime zone between Lebanon and Israel.

The New York Times report said the deal also aims to avoid the threat of immediate conflict between Israel and Lebanon’s Hezbollah militants if the talks fail.

Analysts expect the deal to create new sources of energy and revenue for both countries, the report said. This is especially important for Lebanon, which is facing an energy and financial crisis. There is also the possibility that the agreement will pave the way for a new source of gas for Europe, which is suffering from energy shortages due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

What is not in the contract?

The agreement makes no mention of the land border shared between Israel and Lebanon. The border is still disputed. But both countries are in ceasefire. This border is also called the Blue Line. This is the UN prepared border after Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon in 2000.

The border is currently patrolled by UN forces. Resolving the border dispute between Lebanon and Israel is more complicated and lacks the urgency of the energy element, according to a Archyde.com report. Any decision on the border will depend on a broader peace agreement, which is not likely to materialize anytime soon, according to a Archyde.com report.

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