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Report: Tunnels Found in Northern Israel are ‘Old, Deserted’

The “Hizbullah” tunnels reportedly discovered by the Israeli army on the Blue Line last week are “old and deserted” tunnels that Israel is “exploiting for political ends,” al-Joumhouria daily reported on Saturday.

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Presidency Office Denies Premiership Remarks Attributed to Aoun

The Presidency’s media office stressed on Friday that government formation remarks attributed to President Michel Aoun were “inaccurate.”

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Jumblat Criticizes Expansion of Cabinet Seats Proposal

Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat criticized on Friday a suggestion to expand the cabinet seats from 30 to 32, in light of the state’s “efforts to curb squandering and expenses.”

“In light of full swing efforts to curtail squandering and expenses, it seems cloning two new ministers is what’s required,” Jumblat said in a sarcastic tweet.

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Mustaqbal, PSP, LF ‘Won’t Join Govt. Not Led by Hariri,’ Mahfoud Says

In light of reports claiming the President would replace the Premier if he rejects a 32-minister government proposal, head of the Change Movement Elie Mahfoud warned on Friday that al-Mustaqbal Movement, the Progressive Socialist Party and the Lebanese Forces “would not take part in a government not led by PM-designate Saad Hariri.”

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UNIFIL Confirms 'Existence of a Tunnel' in Northern Israel

UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Stefano Del Col, along with a technical team, on Thursday visited a location near Metulla in northern Israel where the Israeli army “has discovered a tunnel close to the Blue Line,” the U.N. force said in a statement.

“Based on the site inspection, UNIFIL can confirm the existence of a tunnel at the location,” the force added.

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Netanyahu: Israel May Have to Operate in Lebanon

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that there is “reasonable possibility” Israel will have to “operate in Lebanon” to neutralize Hizbullah's alleged “attack tunnels.”

"We are denying our enemies the tunnels weapon in a systematic, determined manner and we will do whatever it takes," Netanyahu told 25 foreign ambassadors at a briefing near Lebanon’s border.

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Syria Ambassador Stresses Coordination with Lebanon on Refugees’ Return

Syrian ambassador to Lebanon Ali Abdul Karim Ali stressed on Thursday that coordination between Lebanon and Syria on the file of refugees falls in the interest of both countries.

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Report: New Govt. Solution Seeks to Appoint Karami, 'Compensate' for Hariri

Part of a suggestion to form a Cabinet of 32 ministers instead of 30, was to allocate a ministerial seat from President Michel Aoun’s share to Independent Sunni MP Faisal Karami, and to let Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri name the two extra ministers, the pan-Arab al-Hayat daily reported on Thursday.

A reliable source told the daily the proposal -aiming to ease the government formation gridlock-- calls for “naming Karami instead of the latter’s candidate Fadi al-Asayli, and that Hariri be given the right to name the two extra ministers (a Alawite and a Christian minority minister) in compensation for accepting the appointment of Karami,” he said.

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Israeli Spokesperson Addresses PM in Tweet about Hizbullah

Israeli army Arabic spokesperson Avichay Adraee said in remarks he addressed to Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri on Twitter that “Hizbullah is still lying to you and to the Lebanese.”

“You have said these things about (UN) Resolution 1701 long ago. We truly want to believe you, but the problem is that Hizbullah is still lying to you and to the Lebanese,” said Adraee.

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Othman Says ISF 'Didn’t Open Fire' in Jahliyeh Although It's 'Justified'

The Internal Security Forces chief Maj. Gen. Imad Othman stressed on Wednesday that although the ISF members are “allowed to use their weapons” during an operation, but they “did not use that right to fire gunshots yesterday” (during Saturday’s Jahlieyh raid).

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