Following years of mediation by the United States, the Governments of Israel and Lebanon today announced consensus on an historic agreement to establish a permanent maritime boundary between the two countries. This breakthrough promises to usher in a new era of prosperity and stability in the Middle East and will provide vital energy to the people of the region and to the world. Beyond delivering tremendous benefits to the Lebanese and Israeli people, today’s announcement demonstrates the power of regional cooperation to meet shared challenges in the Middle East and beyond. It also underscores the transformative power of American diplomacy.
This agreement protects the economic and security interests of Israel and Lebanon and marks a new chapter for the people in the region. I thank the leaders of Israel and Lebanon for their willingness to negotiate in the best interests of their people, and I thank Special Presidential Coordinator Amos Hochstein and his team for their tireless diplomatic work in bringing the parties together to accomplish this deal. It is now critical that all parties rapidly finalize the agreement and uphold their commitments to work toward implementation to the benefit of the region and world.