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Army Continues Akkar Raids, Arrests Hoblos Supporters

The army continued on Friday of areas in the northern region of Akkar wanted for their involvement in recent clashes with the military, reported the National News Agency.

MTV said that two supporters of Sheikh Khaled Hoblos were arrested in Akkar.

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Bassil Goes to Naqoura in First Such Visit to UNIFIL by Lebanese FM

Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil went to the headquarters of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon on Friday, the first such visit by a Lebanese foreign minister to the peacekeeping mission since 1978.

UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Major-General Luciano Portolano briefed Bassil in Naqoura on the situation in UNIFIL’s area of operations south of the Litani River, said a press release.

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Patriarch al-Rahi: I Will Soon 'Spill the Beans'

Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi lamented on Friday the “make or break” moral that the political parties raise their youth on, stressing that Lebanese politicians are still waiting for a green-light from foreign countries to elect a head of state.

“Soon I will spill the beans,” said the Patriarch, expressing resentment at the almost five month delay in electing a president.

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Army Arrests Lebanese and Syrians in Tripoli Raids, Seizes Arms Depot for Sheikh Diqmaq

The army said Friday it has arrested several people suspected of attacking soldiers and seized weapons and ammunition from a depot in the northern city of Tripoli.

The military said in a communique that eight Lebanese were apprehended for involvement in shooting attacks and for tossing grenades at military posts.

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Gunmen Kidnap Drivers, Seize Trucks in Brital

Armed men briefly kidnapped two drivers and took over their trucks near the eastern town of Brital, the state-run National News Agency reported Friday.

NNA said the attack took place at Brital's entrance as the drivers were transporting outdoor light poles belonging to state-run firm Electricite du Liban.

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Report: U.S., France Pressured Qatar over Arsal Mediation

Qatar has come under U.S. and French pressure over the negotiations with the kidnappers of Lebanese soldiers and policemen amid a report of money transfers to the militants who are deployed on the Lebanese-Syrian border.

As Safir newspaper said on Friday that the Qatari leadership has recently received messages from Washington and Paris to speed up its mediation in the case of the troops and police who were taken hostage in August.

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Ibrahim Threatens to Quit Arsal Mission, Dispatches Humanitarian Convoy to Syrian Refugees

General Security chief Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim resented on Friday what he called a “disarray” in the thorny issue of the abducted soldiers and policemen, warning to leave the issue to other parties to tackle if that confusion persisted.

Meanwhile a convoy of humanitarian aid dispatched by Ibrahim arrived on Thursday to the Syrian refugee encampments in the northeastern border of Arsal.

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Hariri Donates $20 Million for Reconstruction Efforts in North

Al-Mustaqbal movement leader MP Saad Hariri on Thursday announced that he has donated 20 million dollars for reconstruction efforts in northern Lebanon, which has witnessed fierce battles between the army and Islamist gunmen.

“Twenty million dollars have been allocated for the areas affected by the latest clashes in the city of Tripoli -- especially Bab al-Tabbaneh -- the Bhannine region in Minieh and the rest of northern areas that witnessed military confrontations,” Hariri said in a statement.

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Saudi to Nasrallah: The Parties Embracing Terrorism Have Become Well-Known

Saudi Arabia stressed Thursday that it was the first country to engage in the fight against terrorism, in an apparent response to recent remarks by Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.

The kingdom was “among the first states that fought terrorism and suffered its attacks,” Saudi National Guard Minister Prince Mutaib bin Abdullah said.

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Cabinet Allocates L.L.30 Billion for Tripoli, Secures Payment of Civil Servants Wages

The government allocated on Thursday 30 billion Lebanese pounds for the northern city of Tripoli, following the violent clashes that took place in the old souks and Bab al-Tabbaneh last week.

“Ministers agreed that some areas of Tripoli and Akkar are suffering from extreme poverty and negligence and that the situation needs to be addressed in a serious manner through a reconstruction plan,” Information Minister Ramzi Jreij announced after a cabinet session at the Grand Serail.

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