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Israel Govt to Approve Maritime Border Deal with Lebanon Despite Right-Wing Opposition

Israel Govt to Approve Maritime Border Deal with Lebanon Despite Right-Wing Opposition

Wednesday, 5 October, 2022 - 07:15
Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid. (Reuters)

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid and Defense Minister Benny Gantz stressed that their government would overcome political and legal objections to the agreement with Lebanon on maritime border demarcation.

They assured the Israeli and Lebanese public that the decision of the Supreme Court in Jerusalem to conduct an examination of the motion filed against the agreement is a normal procedure.

Both leaders argued that there is no legal basis for the court to scrap the agreement.

The reassurance came in response to objections by the Israeli right against the deal. The Supreme Court has set a session for October 28 to consider a petition against the agreement.

The Israeli opposition is trying to portray the agreement, which was drafted by US mediator Amos Hochstein, as a failure for the Lapid government. Moreover, they are questioning the government’s ability to finalize a deal ahead of next month’s elections.

Opposition leader and former PM Benjamin Netanyahu warned that the right-wing government he intends to form if he returns to power will work to torpedo the agreement with Lebanon.

However, Lapid and Gantz stressed that a cabinet session will convene on Thursday to deliberate on all legal considerations and aspects of the deal.

The cabinet may decide to submit the agreement to all members of the government and later to the parliament for notification, not approval.

A close associate of Lapid said some comments about the agreement exist in Israel and Lebanon. Nevertheless, the associate affirmed that the deal is good and beneficial for both sides and reflects Israeli security and economic interests.

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