Report: Seven Members of Arab Democratic Party behind Tripoli Bombings

Several members of the Arab Democratic Party are behind the twin bombings in the northern city of Tripoli in August, reported al-Mustaqbal daily on Sunday.

Informed sources told the daily that seven members of the party carried out the attack that targeted al-Salam and Taqwa Mosques on August 23.

Youssef Diab was behind the bombing at al-Salam Mosque, while Ahmed Merhi was behind the attack at the other one.

The sources said that Merhi drove a booby-trapped car to the mosque before detonating it.

Moreover, they revealed that Syrian intelligence plotted the attack in cooperation with arrested cleric Sheikh Ahmed al-Gharib.

They stressed however that the cleric was not involved in the execution of the attacks because it sought sides that had prior experience in carrying out such operations.

Syrian intelligence provided the booby-trapped cars and an arrested suspect Hassan Jaafar allowed their safe passage through the Lebanese city of Hermel to the town of al-Qobeiyyat in the northern region of Akkar.

The seven-member Arab Democratic Party group soon received the cars and took them to the Tripoli neighborhood of Jabal Mohsen, a stronghold of the party, on August 21.

Later on Sunday, Arab Democratic Party media official Abdul Latif Saleh told LBCI television: “The judiciary did not summon Youssef Diab and we will turn him in if he is.”

“We will turn in any culprit to the state because we abide by the law,” he stressed.

Sources told LBCI: "Hayan Haidar formed a five-member group in Jabal Mohsen, which included Diab and Merhi, in order to carry out the Tripoli bombings in cooperation with Syrian intelligence."

On Friday, armed clashes broke out in Tripoli's areas of Bab al-Tabbaneh, Jabal Mohsen and Syria Street over Diab's arrest, wounding an army soldier and a young man identified as S.M.

Forty-five people were killed and over 800 wounded in the twin Tripoli bombings.

On Saturday, State Commissioner to the Military Court Judge Saqr Saqr ordered the arrest of several suspects over their alleged involvement in the bombings.

Saqr charged on August 30 three suspects in the twin bombings of Tripoli in addition to a Syrian army Captain and another Syrian man over the booby-trapped cars.

Head of the pro-Syria Islamic Tawhid Movement-Command Council Sheikh Hashem Minkara, Sheikh al-Gharib and informer Mustafa Houri were charged with the formation of an armed gang and undermining the authority of the state.

They were also accused of forming a terrorist network and planting explosives and booby-trapped cars.

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