Ar­rest of 19 ISIS mil­i­tants

Executive Magazine - - Last Month -

Fol­low­ing a del­uge of se­cu­rity alerts is­sued by for­eign em­bassies, the Le­banese army an­nounced on Septem­ber 15 that it had ar­rested 19 peo­ple con­nected to ISIS on sus­pi­cion of plan­ning a ter­ror at­tack in Le­banon. Army in­tel­li­gence re­vealed that they had dis­cov­ered a cell led by an Egyp­tian na­tional Fadi Ibrahim Ahmed (known as Abu Khatib), who was hid­ing in the Ain al-Hil­weh refugee camp. The ar­rests took place af­ter sev­eral army raids. The an­nounce­ment came as Le­banese au­thor­i­ties sought to calm the panic raised a day ear­lier af­ter the US Em­bassy in Le­banon on Septem­ber 14 is­sued a no­tice to its cit­i­zens, warn­ing that due to on­go­ing threats to lo­ca­tions such as Casino Du Liban in Jounieh, the em­bassy had barred its staff from vis­it­ing the casino. The US warn­ing was swiftly fol­lowed by sim­i­lar warn­ings from other em­bassies in Le­banon, in­clud­ing the French and Cana­dian em­bassies and the United King­dom’s For­eign and Com­mon­wealth Of­fice, which is­sued a no­tice to its cit­i­zens cit­ing the US alert and warn­ing that the risk from ter­ror­ism was high. The em­bassies called on their cit­i­zens to be vig­i­lant in pub­lic spa­ces, warn­ing that the risk of an at­tack was high. The raft of warn­ings prompted crit­icim from Le­banese au­thories, with the for­eign min­istry is­su­ing a state­ment call­ing on the em­bassies to take into ac­count the panic their state­ments may cause. In­te­rior Min­is­ter Nouhad Mach­nouk also tweeted that the Le­banese au­thor­i­ties were check­ing the au­then­tic­ity of these threats and that there was “no need for fear or ex­ag­ger­a­tion.” For­eign Min­is­ter Ge­bran Bas­sil tweeted ask­ing for calm, not­ing that the Le­banese state was aware of the dan­gers and was con­fronting them.

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