Lebanon Interior minister: ISF doesn’ distribute arms it confiscates them


Arab Democratic Party political relations official Refaat Eid told Al-Manar television on Friday that the Internal Security Forces (ISF) Information Branch is “distributing weapons” and is in the “middle of a conspiracy in Lebanon or Syria.”

The ISF Information Branch and other Arab bodies are responsible for what is going on in Tripoli, Eid said.

“We did not allow any provocation, while the other side is covered by [ISF Director General] Achraf Rifi and the Information Branch. We are a minority and we are against strife, but we have to see who is [inciting violence].”

Eid also thanked the Lebanese army for intervening to control the situation and said that the events in Tripoli are a response to developments in Syria.

“Strife failed in Syria, and they want to transfer it to Tripoli. We tell them that we will not allow Sunni-Alawite strife.”

He also said that there is information that ISF Information Branch head Wissam al-Hassan met with Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdel Aziz to plan strife “between Sunnis and Alawites in Tripoli, Akkar and Syria.”

Armed clashes erupted earlier in the day in Tripoli following a rally in support of Syrian protesters. The military official of the Arab Democratic Party, Ali Fares was killed and 5 others including one army soldier and a seven year old child .At least 22 others were reportedly injured

Jabal Mohsen and Bab al-Tabbaneh have been in recent years the scene of intense clashes between Sunni supporters of Lebanon’s former PM Saad Hariri and Alawite Muslims who are loyal to the Hezbollah-led coalition backed by Iran and Syria

No arms

Lebanese minister of Interior Marwan Charbel denied any arms being distributed by ISF

“The talk about arms being distributed by ISF Information Branch is nonsense said Charbel adding this is just political talk . Charbel stressed that ISF confiscate weapons and does not distribute them.

Armed clashes erupted earlier in the day in the Jabal Mohsen and Bab al-Tabbaneh neighborhoods following a rally in support of Syrian protestors.

According to AFP, six were killed, including Arab Democratic Party security official Ali Fares.

The new Lebanese cabinet—headed by Mikati—was formed on Monday after almost five months of deliberations between the March 8 parties.