Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil came under fire after a TV interview in which he said that normalization of relations with Israel was "not an ideological issue" and that "we are not opposed to the existence of Israel and to its right to security." He made the statements on the Lebanese Mayadeen TV channel on December 26. After the ensuing controversy, with several Lebanese officials calling on him to resign, he said that his words had been taken out of context, a claim that the TV channel rejected.
Interviewer: "Do you think that some Arab countries' normalization of relations with Israel has become a fait accompli?"
Gebran Bassil: "Let me tell you something. For us, this is not an ideological issue. We are not opposed to the existence of Israel, and to its right to security. We are not opposed to this."
Gebran Bassil: "All we are saying is that all nations should have security and not reject one another."