Amos Hochstein, US Special Envoy for International Energy Affairs, arrived in Beirut this week. This comes as Lebanon awaits the ratification of two deals that have been a long time coming that could provide it with much needed gas and electricity as blackouts have become a way of life for its beleaguered population.

The ambitious projects, first announced last September, would see Lebanon supplied with both electricity and gas via Jordan and Syria. The gas would nominally come from Egypt but in reality be diverted Israeli supplies. Both the presence of Israel – with which Lebanon and Syria have no diplomatic relations – as an indirect party to the deal and the need to secure a waiver from international sanctions on financial dealings with Syria have necessitated the heavy involvement of US diplomats in securing the deals. Funding would come from the World Bank (MEES, 24 September 2021). (CONTINUED - 1349 WORDS)