Hochstein says US quietly working to resolve Lebanon-Israel conflict


U.S. mediator Amos Hochstein has said that the US is working in a quiet manner to figure out how to end the cross-border conflict between Lebanon’s Hezbollah and Israel, which has seen the most intense escalation of fighting between the two in nearly two decades.

“A more comprehensive war is not the solution,” Hochstein told Al Arabiya English.

“What we’ve been trying to do is to make sure that we can contain the fighting to the lowest level possible and to work on lasting solutions that can bring a cessation of hostilities,” Hochstein said on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference.

Hochstein added that the US has been clear that it wants to see a cessation of hostilities and an ability for Lebanese residents in the south to return to their homes and for Israelis to be able to return to their homes in the north.

“But they have to be able to return, not just because there’s a ceasefire, but because there are conditions in place that guarantee their security. And I think that conditions have changed after Oct. 7,” Hochstein said.

He added: “Therefore, we have to have a more comprehensive arrangement that will include a number of steps on both sides, to be able to guarantee those kind of measures.”

He also said he is hopeful that a diplomatic resolution would be reached, adding thay the U.S. would continue to work with its European and Gulf allies towards arriving at a deal.

“We’re going to have to do a lot of building up of the Lebanese Armed Forces; we have to build up the economy in south Lebanon. That’s going to require an international coalition of support, not just the United States,” Hochstein said.

Hochstein added he and the other U.S. officials have been in talks with their Gulf partners to discuss the details of a negotiated solution to the current crisis. “And I’m hopeful that we’ll be able to see support from them as we go into this next phase.”

Comments 2
Missing 1948 18 February 2024, 03:58

israeli american biased mediator.

Thumb chrisrushlau 20 February 2024, 00:20

Hochstein continued, "As I see it, there are two options for Israel and Lebanon: they can either renounce racism thereby unleashing chaos, or move to South Dakota. We are working with our partners to ensure that the second option is the one chosen." A spokesperson for South Dakota said, "This is news to us."