Lebanese ally of Syria's Assad detained

Elias Aoun, head of the Lebanese journalists' union, said Prime Minister Najib Mikati had told him Samaha had been held following an order from the acting public prosecutor.

Lebanese ally of Syria's Assad detained

World Bulletin / News Desk

A former Lebanese government minister with close ties to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was detained in Lebanon on Thursday for questioning over what the Lebanese prime minister described as security-related matters.

A security source said Michel Samaha, detained in the early hours, was being questioned about alleged plans to cause instability in Lebanon.

Elias Aoun, head of the Lebanese journalists' union, said Prime Minister Najib Mikati had told him Samaha had been held following an order from the acting public prosecutor.

Samaha has been an outspoken supporter of Assad during the 17-month-old uprising against his rule, echoing an official Syrian narrative that portrays the opposition as terrorists.

He served as a minister in three Lebanese governments between 1992 and 2004 - a period whenSyria dominated politics and security in its smaller neighbour. Samaha is also a former member ofparliament.

Further details on Samaha's detention were not immediately available. Live television footage showed members of the security forces searching his house.

Last Mod: 09 Ağustos 2012, 14:36
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