Prime Minister Tammam Salam, right, receives Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Diplomacy Amos J Hochstein in Beirut, Wednesday, July 1, 2015. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Lebanon told a senior U.S. official that it would not make any concessions on the disputed maritime border zone with Israel believed to contain large quantities of natural gas, but expressed willingness to demarcate the area with the help of the U.N. and all concerned parties, sources and experts said Wednesday.Hochstein met Prime Minister Tammam Salam and Energy and Water Minister Arthur Nazarian in a bid to explore Lebanon's views on the disputed maritime area after Speaker of the Parliament Nabih Berri accused Israel of planning to build an oil platform close to Lebanon's official territorial waters.However, Lebanese officials insist that the U.N. has an interest in taking steps to avoid an open conflict between Lebanon and Israel.Israel has constructed a platform 40 kilometers away from the zone but there were unconfirmed reports that the Israelis may build another platform 10 kilometers away from the Lebanese blocks.Sources said that Hochstein did not make any proposal to the Lebanese officials.
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