Ibrahim Reassures: Refugee Influx Temporary, No Qaida in Lebanonإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
General Security chief Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim on Monday described as “temporary” the influx of Syrian and Palestinian refugees from war-torn Syria into Lebanon, rejecting claims that members of al-Qaida have infiltrated the country.
“The numbers released by international organizations are accurate and might be a little higher. They have mentioned 140,000 but there could be 200,000 (Syrian refugees in Lebanon) due to the fact that some of them are not registering their names with the international organizations,” Ibrahim told a delegation from Lebanon's Editors Syndicate.
“We cannot but welcome those who suffer injustice,” Ibrahim added, noting that the issue has a humanitarian aspect.
The high-ranking security chief reassured “everyone” that “the mission of the General Security department is to monitor their entry and residency and this issue is under control.”
Ibrahim rejected claims about an infiltration by al-Qaida and other organizations, stressing that “things are under control” and refusing to discuss “the political aspects of this issue.”
“This topic is always on the agenda of the periodic meetings held by the security and military leaders. We are addressing the issue and exchanging information to confront it together, but remarks about an organized armed presence by the refugees are unfounded although some isolated cases were recorded,” Ibrahim added.
Commenting on the issue of the Lebanese abductees in Syria, the general said: “The contacts we launched have not stopped until the moment because what's important is their return to their families.”
“If you are not hearing anything about what we did and what we're doing, that can be attributed to a good reason: this is the best approach,” Ibrahim told the delegation.
The families of the abductees “are also our families, and although we understand their emotional reactions, they must show us some prudence,” he added.
And as he noted that “it is not impossible to resolve the case,” Ibrahim warned against “attacking Turkish interests or the interests of other countries because that will not help.”
“The Turks are definitely doing everything in their capacity and Turkish citizens were kidnapped in the past and we worked on releasing them, and the families must rest assured that the case is in safe hands,” the top general added.