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Army Sends Strong Message to Terrorists, Defectors

The Lebanese army on Thursday vowed to stop terrorists from finding a safe haven in Lebanon and held onto the release of the soldiers and policemen taken captive by jihadists in August.

The army leadership said it is “steady and firm in not allowing terrorism to find a safe haven in Lebanon no matter how much sacrifices it makes.”

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Family: Body of Lebanese Businessman Found after Plane Crash

Lebanese businessman George Obaji's body was found in Cypriot territorial waters after his plane crashed en route to Beirut, his family said on Thursday.

The chief of Cyprus' aircraft accidents board said earlier that search crews found wreckage belonging to the small aircraft that vanished on Wednesday.

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Countries Racing to Boost Aid to Lebanese Army to Battle Terrorists

Several countries are currently boosting their arms aid and delivery to the Lebanese army to fortify its capabilities to confront jihadists, who are entrenched on the outskirts of the northeastern border town of Arsal on the porous Syrian-Lebanese border.

A high-ranking military source denied in comments published in al-Joumhouria newspaper on Thursday that Army General Jean Qahwaji discussed with U.S. officials during a recent visit to Washington an Iranian grant to the military.

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Report: Lebanon Thwarts Attempt to Have a Permanent Settlement for Refugees

Lebanon has been pushed to sign the 1951 Geneva Convention on the status of refugees after more than 1.5 million Syrians sought refuge in the country since the eruption of the war in the neighboring country in 2011, As Safir daily reported on Thursday.

The newspaper said Prime Minister Tammam Salam, Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil and Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas thwarted the plot days before attending a conference in Berlin on Syrian refugees.

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Saudi FM Calls on Christians to Agree to Avert Political Crises

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal urged Christians in Lebanon to reach consensus and end their sharp differences to resolve the presidential deadlock and rectify the work of the state institutions.

According to An Nahar newspaper, al-Faisal made his statement during a meeting with Kataeb party MP Sami Gemayel, who traveled on Sunday night to Jeddah upon an invitation by the Saudi FM.

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Jumblat Concerned over Lebanon, Doesn't See New President Anytime Soon

Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat has expressed his deep concern over the situation in Lebanon, saying the country was now fully submerged in Syria's war.

“We have directly entered the Syrian war. The accusations of one party to the other that terrorism wouldn't have reached Lebanon without its intervention (in Syria), are now useless,” Jumblat told al-Akhbar newspaper in an interview published on Thursday.

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Rifi: Granting Jihadists their Demands Should be Done According to Law

Justice Minister Ashraf Rifi said that he will abide by the law regarding any swap between Islamist inmates held at Roumieh prison and the abducted soldiers and policemen, considering that their freedom and safety are more important than any price paid.

“We will abide by the law,” Rifi said in comments published in An Nahar newspaper on Thursday.

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Report: Nasrallah Meets Qahwaji, Expresses Readiness to Aid Army

Hizbullah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah met with Army Commander General Jean Qahwaji recently, media reports said on Thursday.

According to al-Akhbar newspaper, the meeting tackled the latest developments and highlighted the readiness of the resistance to defend Lebanon's southern, northern and eastern border alongside the army.

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Geagea Returns from Saudi after Talks with Hariri, Top Officials

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea returned to Beirut on Wednesday evening after a three-day visit to Saudi Arabia.

Geagea's visit involved meetings with the kingdom's top officials, according to his press office.

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Mashnouq Says Did Not Hint at Hizbullah Link to al-Hassan Assassination

Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq noted Wednesday that he did not hint in his latest speech at a Hizbullah link to the 2012 assassination of Internal Security Forces Intelligence Bureau chief Wissam al-Hassan.

“Had I meant Hizbullah, I would have named it … We won't announce anything before the completion of the investigation in a full manner based on evidence that is not subject to doubt,” Mashnouq said in an interview on al-Jadeed TV.

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