Lebanon Protests Israel's Drilling

Lebanese Foreign Minister Ali Shami has sent a letter to the UN secretary general, protesting Israel's exploitation of Lebanon's energy resources.

The move comes a week after a Texas-based Noble Energy Inc. announced the discovery of a field with an estimated 16 trillion cubic feet of natural gas adjacent to Lebanese maritime borders.

The gas reserve is estimated to be worth more than USD 95 billion and is believed to be the largest amount of natural gas discovered in the world in the last decade, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday.

"Some of the discovered wells are in joint fields between Lebanon and Israel," the Lebanese foreign minister said in his letter to UN chief Ban Ki-moon.

Shami also called for the protection of Lebanese interests.

Lebanon also sent maps to the United Nations in 2010, proving that gas finds extend into the Lebanese territory.

The move comes in addition to previous warnings by several Lebanese officials and the resistance movement of Hezbollah. The past warnings were issued after the Dalit and Tamar natural gas were discovered.

Earlier last year, Speaker of the Lebanese parliament Nabih Berri urged Lebanon to start exploring its offshore natural gas reserves, warning that in case of any dillydallying, Israel would claim the resources.



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