Lebanon, Israel hold 3rd round of indirect talks for maritime border demarcation

Lebanon and Israel held on Thursday the third round of indirect talks on maritime border demarcation, local media reported.

The next round of talks will take place on Nov. 11, which reflects a smooth path toward a potential agreement, the LBCI TV channel said.

Lebanon was trying to push for an additional 1,430-sq-km area on top of the already disputed 860-sq-km area that both sides claim as located inside their respective Exclusive Economic Zone.

The talks, held at the headquarters of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon in Naqoura, started on Oct. 14. Lebanese President Michel Aoun promised to hold strictly technical talks.

The U.N. hosted on Thursday a lunch for both teams from Lebanon and Israel who avoided communicating directly with each other.

In February 2018, Lebanon signed its first offshore oil and gas exploration and production contracts for two energy blocks with a consortium of France’s Total, Italy’s Eni and Russia’s Novatek.