Lebanon president: Israel comment on offshore energy is 'threat to Lebanon'

Lebanese President Michel Aoun speaks during a meeting in Rome, Italy, November 30, 2017. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun on Wednesday said Israeli comments urging firms not to bid on a Lebanese offshore energy tender were “a threat to Lebanon”.

Earlier on Wednesday Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman described Lebanon’s offshore oil and gas licensing process as “very provocative” and urged international firms not to bid.

“Lieberman’s words about Block 9 are a threat to Lebanon and its right to sovereignty over its territorial waters,” Aoun said on his official Twitter account.

Lebanon considers Israel an enemy state and has an unresolved maritime border dispute with it over a triangular area of sea.

(This version of the story refiles capitalizing title of President Aoun in first paragraph)

Writing by Lisa Barrington; Editing by Peter Graff