US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Schenker told Lebanese President Michel Aoun that Washington would continue to play its mediating role in the negotiations on the demarcation of Lebanon’s southern maritime border, Baabda Palace announced Friday.
On the second day of talks with Lebanese officials Friday, Schenker also met with former prime ministers Saad Hariri and Najib Miqati, and the head of Marada Movement, former MP Suleiman Franjieh.
The presidential statement said Aoun informed Schenker that Lebanon is hinging on the US mediating role to reach just solutions in the negotiations, which started this week, to demarcate the maritime border with Israel.
“This role can help overcome difficulties which may hinder the negotiation process,” Aoun added.
The president also thanked the US for the support it gave to Lebanon after the devastating Beirut Port explosion on Aug. 4.
He assured Schenker that officials were trying to establish a government which would focus on achieving necessary reforms.
Schenker praised Aoun’s role in the fight against corruption and expressed hope that a productive government would be formed to implement the reforms.
While Schenker met most Lebanese officials during his visit to Beirut, he shunned Free Patriotic Movement leader Gebran Bassil, who is Aoun’s son-in-law.
US Under-Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale had also excluded Bassil from his talks with Lebanese figures during a trip to Beirut in Aug.