Williams: Lebanon Should Start Drilling for Oil and the U.N. Supports its Right to Do so


U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Michael Williams stressed on Monday the importance of dialogue in settling Lebanese disputes.

He said after holding talks with House Speaker Nabih Berri: “The Speaker and I were in full agreement that irrespective of the differences that may exist internally within Lebanon, dialogue remains the only and most important tool for the Lebanese to resolve their problems.”

“We discussed many issues, both domestic questions, such as the formation of the next government, but also regional problems reflecting the turbulence throughout the Arab world, and particularly the very troubling situation in Libya,” he added.

He also briefed Berri on the current report of the United Nations Secretary General on U.N. Security Council resolution 1701, informing him that he will head to New York at the end of this month to brief the Security Council on March 29.

The meeting also addressed the issue of maritime borders and the exploration and exploitation of resources, whether it be oil or gas, within Lebanese waters.

Williams said: “The Speaker attaches great importance to this and we at the United Nations are trying to see a way forward for the U.N. to be engaged and to try and prevent this issue being a source of conflict in any way between Lebanon and its neighbors.”

“I stressed that the U.N. supports Lebanon’s right to take advantage of all the resources that may be found within its territorial waters and in Lebanon’s Exclusive Economic Zone,” he stated.

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