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Lebanese army detains Daesh suspect near Syrian border

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The photo shows Lebanese army soldiers in the town of Ras Baalbek on August 21, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Lebanon’s army says it has arrested a Lebanese national suspected of being a member of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, who was planning to launch attacks against its troops.

In a Saturday statement, the army said the Daesh suspect was monitoring the home of a senior Lebanese officer in an attempt to assassinate him.

"He also worked on securing the necessary weapons and explosives to execute this operation” and launch bomb attacks against the army and villages in northern Lebanon, the statement said.

The suspect was arrested in the northern village of Wadi Khaled at the border with Syria.

The army statement said the man received orders from Daesh headquarters in the Syrian city of Raqqah and that he was in touch with terrorists in Daesh enclave among the mountains along the Lebanese-Syrian border.

On Tuesday, the Lebanese army said it had captured most of a mountainous area on the border with Syria during an operation aimed at purging the region of Daesh terrorists.

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Backed by the Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah, the army on August 19 began a long-anticipated operation in Jurud Ras Baalbek and Jurud al-Qaa areas on Lebanon's eastern border. The push is meant to clear an area of 120 kilometers from elements of Daesh.

The photo shows Lebanese army soldiers in the town of Ras Baalbek on August 21, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Estimates suggest 600 Daesh terrorists are holding positions in Jurud Ras Baalbek and Jurud al-Qaa areas, the main regions covered by the Lebanon army operation.

The army operation came short after Hezbollah launched its own battle in Jurud Arsal region. Hezbollah managed to inflict huge losses on militants linked to al-Nusra Front, a former affiliate of al-Qaeda which is now mostly concentrated in northwest Syria.

Al-Nusra admitted defeat after six days of fierce fighting and handed over five Hezbollah fighters in return for evacuation of its militants to a region in neighboring Syria.

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