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Iran Backs Lebanon’s Claims on Israel Gas Find

Iran bolsters Lebanese and Hizbullah threat to go to war over their claims on huge gas fields discovered by Israel off the Haifa coast.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 8/9/2011, 2:10 PM

Iran has bolstered the Lebanese and Hizbullah threat to go to war over their claims on huge gas fields discovered by Israel off the Haifa coast.

Iranian ambassador to Lebanon Ghazanfar Rokn-Abadi said, “Iran is prepared to cooperate with Lebanon due to its self-sufficiency in energy fields,” according to Iran’s government-controlled media.

Iran reported that the oil and gas fields discovered by the ”Zionist regime" are in districts “belonging to Lebanon's economic zone monopoly, which have been occupied.”

The discovery of the gigantic Tamar and Leviathan gas fields 80 miles off Israel’s northern coast is considered to be the biggest in years, with the field possibly having the world’s largest gas reserves. Commercial quantities of oil also are indicated.

Since the discovery, Lebanon has claimed the field is in its territorial waters, and Hizbullah, which dominates the coalition government along with pro-Syrian elements, has said it will back Lebanon, using force if necessary.

“We will not allow anyone to lay his hand on our wealth, which our children and grandchildren deserve. We will not only pass debts to them but also a wealth that will guarantee them a better future so that they remain in Lebanon,” Lebanese president resident Michel Sleiman said last week as Lebanon drafted legislation that unilaterally defines its maritime borders with Israel.