Lebanese Army Arrests Two Top ISIS Commanders in Arsal

Lebanese army soldiers patrol a street in Labweh, at the entrance of the border town of Arsal, in eastern Bekaa Valley, Lebanon July 21, 2017. (Reuters)
Lebanese army soldiers patrol a street in Labweh, at the entrance of the border town of Arsal, in eastern Bekaa Valley, Lebanon July 21, 2017. (Reuters)
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Lebanese Army Arrests Two Top ISIS Commanders in Arsal

Lebanese army soldiers patrol a street in Labweh, at the entrance of the border town of Arsal, in eastern Bekaa Valley, Lebanon July 21, 2017. (Reuters)
Lebanese army soldiers patrol a street in Labweh, at the entrance of the border town of Arsal, in eastern Bekaa Valley, Lebanon July 21, 2017. (Reuters)

The Lebanese army announced on Tuesday the arrest of two top ISIS commanders in the town of Arsal on the eastern border, seizing a weapons cache that belonged to the organization, which had occupied Lebanese territories in the Ras Baalbak area, adjacent to Syria.

A statement by the Lebanese army said that the Intelligence Department arrested two key ISIS commanders, Ibrahim Ahmad Zaarour (Lebanese) and Ouday Hussein Khatib (Syrian), in Arsal.

The statement added that the two men had participated in the battles against the Lebanese army in Arsa, and planned terrorist attacks through booby-trapped vehicles and explosive devices.

The apprehended Syrian was involved in the explosion of al-Qalamoun Scholars' Committee headquarters in Arsal and an attack on an army patrol that was heading to inspect the blast.

In a separate statement, the army announced that it had seized in one of the caves in Wadi Rafek, on the outskirts of Ras Baalbek, on the eastern border with Syria, “a depot left by terrorist groups, containing bombs, shells, machine guns, hand grenades and medium and light ammunition.”

The National News Agency said that the weapons were transferred to one of the military barracks in the area, while work on dismantling the bombs was underway since the departure of ISIS militants from the areas.

ISIS militants left the Lebanese territories last August as part of a deal with “Hezbollah” that led to the transportation of the extremists to Syria’s Deir al-Zour, following a similar deal between the group and Al-Nusra Front militants, who were deported to the Syrian province of Idlib.



Hamas’ Armed Wing Says Israeli Airstrike Killed Two Hostages in Rafah

12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
TT

Hamas’ Armed Wing Says Israeli Airstrike Killed Two Hostages in Rafah

12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)

Hamas' armed wing al-Qassam Brigades said on Friday that two Israeli hostages held in Gaza were killed in an Israeli airstrike on Rafah a few days ago.

The group, in a video posted on its Telegram channel, did not release the names of those said to have been killed or provide any evidence.

The Israeli government "does not want your hostages to return, except in coffins," the al-Qassam Brigades statement said.

Israel rescued four hostages held by Hamas in a hostage-freeing operation in central Gaza's al-Nuseirat on June 8. The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said more than 250 Palestinians were killed in the raid.

The war in Gaza erupted when Hamas fighters stormed southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and seizing more than 250 hostages, according to Israeli tallies.

Israel has responded with a military assault on the Gaza Strip that has killed more than 37,000 Palestinians, according to the Gaza health ministry. Israel says its campaign is intended to eliminate Hamas as a threat and free the remaining hostages.