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Abdullah Azzam Brigades Member Arrested, Death Penalty Issued against 6 Fugitives

Army Intelligence arrested a member of the Abdullah Azzam Brigades terrorist group, while Military Examining Magistrate Fadi Sawan asked on Thursday for the death penalty against six Palestinian fugitives on charges of forming an armed group aimed at carrying out terrorist attacks.

Palestinian Bilal Kayed Kayed was arrested on charges of carrying out criminal acts in Lebanon, announced the army in a statement.

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Suleiman and Salam Hail Security Plans in Tripoli and Bekaa

President Michel Suleiman and PM Tammam Salam hailed on Thursday the security plans implemented in the northern city of Tripoli and the eastern Bekaa Valley, and agreed to intensify security measures mainly near places of worship during the holidays, the state-run National News Agency reported.

Suleiman held a security meeting at the Baabda Presidential Palace in the presence of Salam, Minister of Defense Salim Moqbel, Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq in addition to several security and military chiefs.

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Al-Rahi Washes Feet of Roumieh Inmates, Urges Quick Trials

Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi washed the feet of 12 prisoners on Holy Thursday, calling for the quick trial of inmates who have been held without receiving sentences.

During his sermon at Roumieh prison, al-Rahi considered every person “innocent until proven guilty.”

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Israeli Army Kidnaps 5 Lebanese from Shebaa

The Israeli army kidnapped on Thursday five Lebanese, including 2 women and a child, from Lebanese territories in the South.

The kidnapping occurred in the farm of Bastara after a unit crossed the technical fence, said the army in a statement.

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General Security Detains Gang Kingpin for Counterfeiting Return Cards

A kingpin and two members of his cell were detained by the Lebanese General Security over charges of counterfeiting return cards to Lebanon.

The general security said a communique issued on Thursday that the head of the gang, who was identified by his initials, Kh. Aa. and Lebanese national Aa. Gh. and Syrian national Kh. Aa. were arrested after carrying out the necessary investigations.

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Suleiman Congratulates Geagea on his Vision for 'Strong Republic'

President Michel Suleiman has telephoned Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea to congratulate him on the announcement of his candidacy for the presidential elections and his platform, the LF chief's press office said Thursday.

The terse statement said the phone conversation between Suleiman and Geagea took place on Wednesday night.

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Report: Mustaqbal Movement to Support Geagea for Presidency

Al-Mustaqbal Movement will adopt the candidacy of its ally Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea for the presidency, al-Akhbar newspaper reported on Thursday.

Sources close to the LF said in remarks published in the daily that Mustaqbal lawmaker Ahmed Fatfat, who attended Geagea's presidential program launching in Maarab on Wednesday, has reportedly informed the Christian leader of al-Mustaqbal's candidate.

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Berri Denies Parliament Can't Discuss Wage Hike during Presidential Elections

Speaker Nabih Berri has denied that the parliament would not be able to vote on the controversial wage scale after he called on MPs to meet to elect a new president on April 23.

“The two issues are not linked,” the speaker told An Nahar newspaper published on Thursday.

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Senior Officials to Head to Vatican to Celebrate Sainthood of Two Popes

Lebanese officials will attend the ceremonies that would canonize two of the 20th century's most influential popes together.

According to al-Liwaa newspaper published on Thursday, Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi will head to the Vatican on April 24 to participate in declaring Popes John Paul II and John XXIII saints.

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Report: Gemayel to Announce Candidacy this Week

Kataeb party leader Amin Gemayel has informed his allies that he would officially announce his candidacy for the presidency, the party's officials said.

As Safir daily quoted the officials, who were not identified, as saying that Gemayel, a former president, informed the March 14 coalition that he would make the announcement by the end of this week.

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