Lebanon
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Geagea: To Unite Arab and International Efforts to Combat Terrorism

Lebanese Forces chief Samir Geagea stressed the necessity to unite Arab and International efforts to strictly combat extremism and terrorism and all its organizations.

Geagea also underlined, in a statement issued by his press office on Saturday, the necessity to refine the prevailing image of Islam and reveal its true noble nature.

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Two Syrians Detained in Nabatiyeh for Joining ISIL Ranks

The General Security Directorate detained on Saturday two Syrian national on charges of belonging to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

The state-run National News Agency reported that Ali Abed al-Awad (41) and Awad Mohammed al-Ali (19) were detained in the area of Buwaiti in the village of Kfarjoz in the southern province of Nabatieh.

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Conflicting Reports on Thursday's Cabinet Session as Sharp Differences Loom

The cabinet could possibly resume its meetings next Thursday without modifying its decision-making mechanism, but more likely with a change in the performance, after Prime Minister Tammam Salam received assurances that political parties have no intention to obstruct the government’s work, ministerial sources told al-Joumhouriya daily.

However, contacts between Salam and the ministers continue away from media spotlight, sources close to the PM told the daily on Saturday, but they reiterated that the final outcome on a cabinet session could be taking shape.

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Report: Two Bishops Kidnapped in Syria in 2013 'Safe'

Two Orthodox bishops kidnapped in Syria in April 2013 are doing well and in a safe area away from the intense clashes between the Islamic State group, rebels and the forces of President Bashar Assad's regime.

According to a report published in al-Akhbar newspaper on Saturday, the whereabouts of the two bishops, Yohanna Ibrahim and Boulos Yaziji, remain unknown as the IS militants continuously changed their location “for reasons related to secrecy and to protect them from the surrounding fighting and shelling.”

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Report: Nusra Front Hands Over Demands to Mediator in Hostages Case

Al-Qaida-affiliate al-Nusra Front reportedly handed over to the Qatari appointed mediator a list of its demands in return for the release of the Lebanese soldiers and policemen in its captivity.

According to As Safir newspaper published on Saturday, the demands include the names of the inmates that the Nusra seeks their release from Lebanese and Syrian prisons.

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Mashnouq Says Operation in Bekaa Valley Ongoing, Considers Security Situation 'Good'

Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq stressed on Saturday that the security plan in the Bekaa Valley is ongoing, describing the security situation as “good.”

Mashnouq said in comments published in As Safir newspaper that efforts will focus on the intelligence in order to detain the dangerous outlaws and kingpins controlling several gangs.

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U.N. Chief on 1701: Hizbullah, Israel Violated Security Council Resolution

United Nations General Secretary chief Ban Ki-moon condemned in his latest report on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1701 Hizbullah's attack against an Israeli military vehicle in the occupied Shebaa Farms.

Ban considered it a “serious breach for the cease fire,” warning that it could lead to a new war that the sides of the conflict cannot endure, An Nahar newspaper reported on Saturday.

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Lebanon-born Syrian Refugees Risk Stateless Legal Limbo

Syrian refugee Yasmine Khalaf lies next to her day-old daughter Israa in a Lebanese hospital, worrying that her tiny newborn risks life without a legal identity.

Israa, sleeping swaddled in a fluffy pink blanket, is one of tens of thousands of Syrian refugees born in Lebanon who are threatened with statelessness because of the hurdles to registering their births.

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Al-Minieh Hospital Shut for Two Months to Improve Standards

Health Minister Wael Abou Faour announced on Friday the temporary closure of al-Minieh hospital to allow it to meet health standards.

The hospital, located in northern Lebanon, will be given two months to improve its conditions.

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Army's Operation in Ras Baalbek Continues for Second Day in a Row

The army continued to target on Friday militant posts on the outskirts of the northeastern border village of Ras Baalbek in the Bekaa, the state-run National News Agency reported.

The sounds of explosions were heard in nearby villages in the Bekaa.

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