Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri has described the talks that a U.S. envoy held Wednesday in Lebanon as “more than positive.”
The U.S. envoy, Amos Hochstein, met Wednesday with President Michel Aoun, Berri and PM Najib Miqati in a bid to rekindle moribund talks over a maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel that is holding up oil and gas explorations.
In an interview with Asharq al-Awsat newspaper published Thursday, Berri said Wednesday’s discussions “have in principle shelved the shuttle negotiations idea that the Americans had proposed as an alternative to the indirect negotiations that were held at the U.N. headquarters at the border.”
“Extensive discussions took place and led to returning to the framework agreement that we had previously announced as the basis for the negotiations,” the Speaker added.
He also said that the U.S. envoy will visit Israel to obtain approval of the decision and that he received U.S. reassurances that Lebanon will be granted exemptions that would it to import gas and electricity via Syria despite the Caesar Act.
Informed sources in Lebanon meanwhile told the newspaper that “there are no indications that point to an imminent resumption of the negotiations” and that “nothing has been settled until the moment.”