Top Lebanese security officials gathered Wednesday to discuss a security plan for Tripoli and Lebanon’s border with Syria, in an effort to contain the fallout from the Syrian crisis.
The meeting of the Higher Defense Council was chaired by President Michel Sleiman. Army Chief General Jean Kahwagi, Prime Minister Tammam Salam, Defense Minister Samir Moqbel, Internal Security Forces chief Ibrahim Basbous and General Abbas Ibrahim, the Director of General Security, also attended the meeting.
No additional details were released on the meeting.
Lebanon has been rocked by a series of rocket attacks and bombings linked to the crisis in Syria. Rebel groups who claim responsibility for the attacks cite Hezbollah’s involvement in the Syria conflict.
The northern and eastern borders have also allegedly served as conduits for car bombs and rebel fighters to enter Lebanon.
The influx of refugees has also continued unabated, with recent battles between rebels and the Syrian regime backed by Hezbollah in the border province of Yabroud.
Meanwhile, in remarks published Thursday, Lebanese Army Commander General Jean Kahwagi (photo) said 85% of terrorism-related arrests have been made.
The Lebanese Army “was able to break Israeli spy networks and terrorist cells, arresting more than 85% of those involved in the bombings that targeted the Army and Lebanese Security Forces,” Kahwagi said.
He said the military has identified the remaining suspects, their objectives and funders as well as their whereabouts, adding that the Army was monitoring their movements prior to their arrest.
“Lebanon is passing through a critical phase of its history in light of the security and stability threats facing it,” Kahwagi added. He vowed that the military would not give up its right to enforce stability and prevent self-security.
Kahwagi said the Army has taken a “bold decision” to prevent sectarian strife in Lebanon. “We won’t tolerate chaos,” he stressed.
Kahwagi said the Lebanese Army was being targeted by Israel through spy networks and terror cells. “But this will not deter us from continuing to dismantle the network and arrest those cells,” he pledged.
“The Army is fully ready to repel any Israeli aggression,” he concluded.
Source: The Daily Star