Lebanon Threatens to Confront Israeli Separation Wall

Lebanon Threatens to Confront Israeli Separation Wall

Thursday, 8 February, 2018 - 06:45
Jumblatt met with Deputy Assistant Secretary of State David Satterfield on Wednesday/NNA
Beirut - Caroline Akoum
Lebanon on Wednesday threated to confront Israel if it goes ahead with plans to build a cement wall along the country’s border.

A meeting of the Higher Defense Council headed by President Michel Aoun on Wednesday discussed the security situation in the country and the Israeli intention to build a wall on the southern border of Lebanon, in addition to Block 9-related threats.

“The Council shall take appropriate decisions and give directions thereon. The Council shall keep its decisions confidential in accordance with the law,” it said.

UNIFIL official spokesperson, Andrea Tenenti, on Wednesday announced in a statement that the Israeli side has already begun to carry out works south of the Blue Line.

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State David Satterfield was visiting Lebanese top officials to prevent any confrontation between Beirut and Tel Aviv.

His visit comes ahead of an expected one-day trip by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to Beirut next February 15.

“The US diplomatic efforts succeeded in preventing any confrontation between Beirut and Tel Aviv,” ministerial sources said.

Satterfield met Wednesday with Speaker Nabih Berri, Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil and head of the Democratic Gathering MP Walid Jumblatt.

Ministerial sources who attended the council’s meeting on Wednesday told Asharq Al-Awsat, “Participants rejected the separation wall, a position transferred by Lebanon to Israel through UNIFIL officials during the last meeting held last Monday in Naqoura between the three parties.”

The sources added that based on available data, Israel is ongoing in its plan to build the cement wall, while Lebanon is always ready to confront any aggression, and will use all diplomatic and political contacts via international actors to address the issue.

The sources added that the “Council” ordered the Lebanese Army to confront any Israeli aggression with an assertion that directions thereon will remain confidential.

“Options remain open for the Lebanese Army in this regard, including the military ones,” military sources told Asharq Al-Awsat on Wednesday.

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