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US said to redouble efforts for Israel-Lebanon maritime talks after Beirut blast

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Washington has renewed efforts to launch direct negotiations between Israel and Lebanon over their disputed maritime border, and hopes to reach a breakthrough before November’s US election, Axios reported Friday, amid disputes over who should mediate the talks.

Israeli officials told the website that the administration decided to make a new push for progress in the wake of the Beirut port explosion and amid Lebanon’s economic and civil crisis.

Lebanon in 2018 signed its first contract to drill for oil and gas in its waters, including a block disputed by its southern neighbor Israel, with which it has fought several wars.

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