The President of the Lebanese Parliament has rejected the mediation of the United States of America in the issue with Israel concerning maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean Sea. His declaration may be found here (in Arabic). This follows the exclusive licensing of two oil blocks in a disputed area to a private consortium by the Lebanese Minister of Energy. Yet Israel maintains claims to oil deposits in that region as well. The USA Secretary of State has on this matter affirmed that this “is an extremely important issue to Lebanon” and that “it’s important to Israel as well, to come to some agreement so that private companies can go to work offshore and determine what, in fact, might be available in terms of natural resource development”. One of the members of the consortium that has been licensed by Lebanon to explore blocks in the disputed area affirms that they “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)”. Their press release may be found here.