Lebanon: Naqoura Port Plan to Help with Oil Exploration

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Saadallah Hamad, assured the erection of that wall is considered an aggression against Lebanese sovereignty.

Total-led worldwide consortium (Total 40%, ENI 40%, Novatek 20%) signed two Exploration and Production Agreements (EPA) with the Republic of Lebanon, covering Blocks 4 and 9, located in the deep waters offshore Lebanon.

As for Block 9, Total and its partners are fully aware of the Israeli-Lebanese border dispute in the southern part of the block that covers only very limited area (less than 8% of the block's surface). Israel on the other hand claims that the wall is being built inside the occupied Palestinian territories. "The Higher Defense Council has given instructions to confront this aggression to prevent Israel from building this so-called wall barrier on Lebanese territory", it added.

"Any work that is conducted along the Blue Line should be predictable and also coordinated with UNIFIL in order to prevent misunderstanding and decrease tension", he told The Associated Press in an interview at the UNIFIL base in the town of Naqoura, in south Lebanon on Wednesday. Tenenti said both parties demonstrated their commitment to preserve stability.

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The three companies have bid for two of Lebanon's 10 offshore blocks, to determine whether oil and gas exist.

Israel waged two all-out wars against Lebanon in 2000 and 2006 but fell short of its military objectives in both cases in the face of strong resistance by Hezbollah and the Lebanese army.

Lebanon's energy and water minister said the country will start exploratory offshore drilling for oil and gas next year.

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