Two Versions of Arsal's Friday Incidence 'under Investigation'إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
LBCI television reported on Thursday two different versions of Friday's incident in the Bekaa town of Arsal that resulted in the death of Major Pierre Bashaalani and Adjutant Ibrahim Zahraman, revealing that both stories are “under investigation by concerned authorities”.
According to the town's residents, three civil vehicles fired shotguns at Khaled Hmayyed, a suspect wanted on terrorism charges, near his house in Arsal while he was on his way to perform Friday's prayers.
"Hmayyed's body was seized by the shooters and they took off to a deserted location,” the residents told LBCI.
They added: “An exchange of gunfire occurred when people from Arsal followed the cars to retrieve his body and were faced with an army patrol”.
Meanwhile, the army explained that the patrol wanted to avoid a confrontation with Arsal residents while arresting Hmayyed, explaining why it headed to a nearby location, LBCI reported.
"Both versions of the incident are being investigated by concerned authorities,” LBCI said.
The television channel revealed that two arrest warrants were issued by Military examining magistrate Judge Fadi Sawan against Hmayyed, renouncing claims by Arsal residents who denied the existence of such judicial writs.
It explained: “The first one was issued in November 2011 and it accused him with an attempted murder”.
The second one, however, was issued in 2012 for his alleged affiliation with a terrorist organization.
Ahmed al-Hojeiri, a suspect in Friday's incident, was arrested on Thursday according to LBCI.
“He was caught disguised as a shepherd,” it remarked.
The army has sealed off all the entrances to Arsal and brought in reinforcements as part of measures aimed at arresting members of an armed group that targeted the patrol and killed Bashaalani and Zahraman.
The army also erected checkpoints at the entrances of the town to check the identities of passers-by.