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Hizbullah Agrees to Meet al-Rahi, Says Contacts Ongoing

Hizbullah doesn't oppose any meeting with Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi as the party stressed that contacts with Bkirki are ongoing.

“We don't mind to hold a meeting (with al-Rahi) at any time,” Hizbullah circles said in comments published in al-Joumhouria newspaper.

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Mashnouq Denies Foreign Mediation on Arsal Captives as Jihadists Set Deadline

Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq has said he was not aware of the involvement of a regional country in the mediation to release the troops and policemen kidnapped by jihadists in the northeastern border town of Arsal earlier this month.

Al-Mashnouq told al-Akhbar newspaper published on Thursday that General Security chief Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim is not in contact with any regional or Arab country in the efforts exerted at setting free the soldiers and Internal Security Forces members.

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Syrian Arrested in Barja for Slaughtering Niece

Security forces on Wednesday arrested a Syrian national in the Chouf town of Barja for slaughtering his niece “for family reasons.”

The Internal Security Forces said in a released statement that the body of the slain “Syrian national Nawwar al-Khaled, 21, was found slaughtered inside her relatives' house in the town of Barja.”

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Change and Reform Warns of Elimination of Christians in East, ISIL-Like Policies in Lebanon

The Change and Reform bloc condemned on Wednesday the “elimination” of Christians in the East, “stretching from Iraq and leading to the presidential palace in Baabda.”

A statement, read by Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil after the bloc's weekly meeting, said: “We demand a halt to the ISIL-like policies against Christians in Lebanon.”

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Geagea Denies Suffering Heart Attack, Reiterates Rejection of Parliament Term Extension

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea denied on Wednesday that he had suffered a heart attack as some media outlets suggested.

"I reassure everyone that I am in good health and doing my work as usual at the LF headquarters in Maarab,” Geagea told MTV in the afternoon.

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Patriarchs of the Orient Urge International Protection for Christians from Erbil, Say Idea of Own Province 'Now Acceptable'

The patriarchs of the Orient on Wednesday called for international protection for Christians, considering that the idea of establishing a province for this religious minority “has become acceptable.”

"What we care about is safeguarding the presence of our (Christian) brothers and providing protection for them,” Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi said after a visit to the Iraqi Kurdish region of Erbil.

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EDL Files Charges against 3 Contract Workers for Defamation, Shutting Company

The Electricite du Liban administration announced on Wednesday that it is taking legal action against three contract workers for their recent actions at the company's headquarters in Beirut's Mar Mikhael neighborhood, reported the National News Agency.

It said that the administration filed the charges against them for closing the company and preventing its employees from heading to their jobs.

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Huge Blaze Near Ferzol Grocery Market

Firefighters from six departments in the Bekaa Valley on Wednesday doused a huge fire that broke out near the grocery market of the eastern town of Ferzol.

According to information received by Naharnet, the blaze erupted in an area housing plastic grocery baskets.

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Report: Tough Conditions on Swap of Islamists for Lebanese Soldiers, Policemen

Jihadists, who are holding Lebanese army troops and policemen captive, have reportedly announced conditions for their release despite the denial of Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq and mediators.

Al-Qaida linked al-Nusra Front members have said they would release one soldier or security forces member held captive earlier this month in return for two Islamists jailed in Lebanon, al-Akhbar daily said Wednesday.

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Uruguay Sending Mission to Lebanon to Meet Syrian Refugees 

A delegation from Uruguay will head to Lebanon on Friday to select 120 Syrian refugees who can go to the South American country, the country's Human Rights Department said.

Forty of the refugees are scheduled to arrive in September and the rest next year.

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