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Parliament speaker: Lebanon will defend marine resources 

Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri on April 1, 2019 [HAIDAR HAMDANI/AFP via Getty Images]
Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri on April 1, 2019 [HAIDAR HAMDANI/AFP via Getty Images]

Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri said yesterday that Beirut will defend its marine resources just like it had defended its land from the Israeli occupation.

In a statement issued on the 16th anniversary of the Israeli aggression that targeted Lebanon, Berri said: "July 12, 2006 was a victory point for Lebanon, and a new defeat for the Zionist aggression, aborting its new-old project aimed at keeping Lebanon a war-distortion on the sidewalk of the region's crises."

"Today, after 16 years of that persistent Zionist crime against Lebanon, in violation of its sovereignty by land, by continuing its occupation of the northern part of the village of Ghajar, and by air by violating Lebanese sovereignty with more than 22,000 air violations of Resolution #1701, and by sea through its open and hidden aggressive intentions to plunder Lebanon's wealth of oil and gas, we call upon the international community to assume its responsibilities by putting pressure at the political and security levels on the Israeli entity, curbing its aggression and ensuring that it complies with the relevant international resolutions," he continued.

"In parallel, we affirm, in the name of Lebanon, in which the army, people and resistance formula was victorious, that we will totally defend our marine and land resources," he added.

READ: Israel minister threatens Lebanon over disputed gas fields

Last month Israel began gas exploration works in the disputed maritime area between Tel Aviv and Beirut. On 5 June, Lebanon rejected the arrival of the London-based, Greek-owned Energen to work on the Karish field.

Lebanese President Michel Aoun issued a strong warning noting that the vessel entered "the disputed maritime area with Israel" and threatened that "any action or activity in the disputed area represents a provocation and an aggressive action."

Israel rejects that the area is disputed and says it is inside its United Nations-recognised exclusive economic zone.

The Karish gas field contains 1.4 trillion cubic feet of proven and probable gas and this could be a game-changer for Lebanon, which is suffering from a chronic and tight economic crisis.

Lebanon warns Israel against aggressive action in their disputed waters – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/Middle East Monitor]

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