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Army Arrests Lebanese and Foreigners in Anti-Extremism Sweep

The Lebanese army announced on Thursday the arrest of Lebanese citizens and foreigners suspected of belonging to armed groups and terrorist organizations.

Lebanese Abdullah Mahmoud Massoud and his brother Azzam, in addition to Ali Ahmed al-Abdo and Odai Ahmed al-Obaid, were apprehended during a raid that an army unit carried out in the area of al-Zahrieh in the northern city of Tripoli on Wednesday night.

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Geagea: Trash Crisis Will not Pass Without Accountability

Lebanese Forces chief Samir Geagea stressed on Thursday that the waste management crisis that drowned the capital and Mount Lebanon with trash for almost 10 days will not pass by without accountability.

“In all cases, the trash crisis issue will not pass without accountability,” said Geagea via Twitter.

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U.S. Extends National Emergency with Respect to Lebanon

U.S. President Barack Obama has extended the national emergency with respect to Lebanon that was declared in Executive Order 13441 of August 1, 2007.

He said in a statement released by the White House on Wednesday that “the national emergency is to continue in effect beyond August 1, 2015.”

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Mountain Says No Intention to Naturalize Syrians in Lebanon

The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Ross Mountain, has said that the U.N. does not intend to keep Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

“There is no intention by the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees or the U.N. or any other party to naturalize people here,” Mountain told An Nahar daily published on Thursday.

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No Plan for Salam to Resign despite Growing Crises

Prime Minister Tammam Salam has stressed that he will not resign despite growing political and environmental crises that are threatening to spiral out of control.

According to the Kuwaiti al-Anbaa daily published on Thursday, Salam told religious officials and diplomats that the country's political situation is grave but that he would not announce his resignation.

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Jumblat Ready to Accept Waste Bulk but Urges Christian Action

Progressive Socialist Party chief MP Walid Jumblat has allegedly expressed readiness to accept the dumping of around 2,000 tons out of 2,500 tons of waste in Dahr al-Baydar in return for stashing the rest of the garbage in the districts of Metn and Kesrouan.

Al-Akhbar daily said Thursday that 3,000 tons of waste are collected from Beirut, its suburbs, and the districts of Shouf, Aley, Baabda, Kesrouan and Metn daily. Sukleen treats around 500 tons while the rest are dumped in landfills.

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Sources: Iran Not Ready to Resolve Baabda Crisis despite French Pressure

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has urged his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif to exert efforts to end Lebanon's presidential crisis, informed sources said.

The Iranian sources told pan-Arab daily al-Hayat published on Thursday that Fabius told Zarif about the importance of contacting Lebanese parties that are allied with Iran to urge them to find a solution to the deadlock.

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U.S. Defense Secretary Says Iran, Hizbullah Present Security Challenges

U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter has sought to reassure worried lawmakers on the nuclear deal with Iran and stressed that the Islamic Republic and its proxies, including Hizbullah, continue to be a threat.

Iran and its proxies still present security challenges, Carter said on Wednesday at a committee hearing as part of the White House's aggressive campaign to convince Congress to back the Iranian nuclear deal, which calls on Iran to curb its nuclear program in exchange for billions of dollars in sanctions relief.

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Man Abducted after Being 'Lured' to Syria Border

A Lebanese man was kidnapped on Wednesday after being “lured” to the border with Syria, state-run National News Agency reported.

“Lebanese national Khalil Faddoul was abducted after unknown individuals lured him to an area on the Lebanese-Syrian border,” NNA said.

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Protests after 4 Anti-Trash Activists Held over Incident with Derbas' Car

Two sit-ins were held Wednesday to protest the arrest of four anti-trash demonstrators over the interception of the car of Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas during a Tuesday march.

In the morning, activists and friends of the four young men held a sit-in outside the Justice Palace while in the evening a rally was held outside the nearby Social Affairs Ministry. The protesters later marched to the Justice Ministry building.

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