Arrested Daesh suspect sparks string of arrests in Lebanon

Published March 25th, 2015 - 02:23 GMT
Lebanese authorities say they gained intel through recent confessions by the arrested Daesh suspects. (AFP/File)
Lebanese authorities say they gained intel through recent confessions by the arrested Daesh suspects. (AFP/File)

Two terror suspects detained in northeast Lebanon Tuesday could play a vital role in uncovering terrorist networks operating in Lebanon, according to a report published by As-SafirWednesday.

An army statement Tuesday said cousins Omar and Bilal Mikati, both from the northern city of Tripoli, belonged to a terrorist organization and were involved in attacks against the Lebanese army and other terrorist operations.

The two suspects, whose confessions provided valuable information on terror networks and dormant cells operating in Lebanon, were immediately transferred to the headquarters of military intelligence in Yarze, according to the report.

Intelligence gained from the confessions has already led to the arrest of a Syrian terror suspect, according to As-Safir.

Tuesday’s arrest, according to the daily, came after a premeditated plan was carried out by military intelligence, who had been monitoring the cousins’ movements between the Syrian Qalamounregion and the Lebanese town of Arsal, where they were reportedly meeting with area residents in addition to a “well known religious figure.”

Several scenarios for their potential arrest were put in place before military intelligence received confirmation that the duo would be heading to the Bekaa Valley using two fake Syrian IDs.

When the suspects approached an army checkpoint driving a rented vehicle in the Bekaa town of Hrabta, a military intelligence unit was already stationed near the post and ready to carry out the arrest.

According to As-Safir, Bilal Mikati is believed to have been behind the beheading of Lebanese soldier Ali al-Sayyed, who was killed after being captured by ISIS militants on the outskirts of Arsal in August.

Sayyed was the first of four captives to be killed by ISIS and the Nusra Front.

More than 30 Lebanese servicemen were originally abducted by the militants during a five-day battle with the Lebanese army. Eight hostages have since been released and four were killed.

According to a report published by Al-Akhbar Wednesday, the cousins fled from the Qalamoun region towards Lebanon after suspicions of a possible assassination attempt against them due divisions among the ranks of ISIS members in the Qalamoun.

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