Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Lebanon 'arrests head of Abdullah Azzam Brigades'

Majid al-Majid 

The head of a jihadist group that claimed the suicide bomb attack on Iran's embassy in November has been picked up by the Lebanese authorities

Defence Minister Fayez Ghosn told  the AFP news agency that Majid al-Majid, the Saudi "emir" of the al-Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades, was being held by army intelligence in Beirut.Hezbollah's al-Manar television also said Majid was detained "recently".


The embassy attack carried out in November killed 23 people, including the Iranian cultural attache.

A Salafist cleric close to the Abdullah Azzam Brigades, Sheikh Siraj al-Din Zureiqat, had issued a claim of responsibility in its name. He warned  that the attacks would continue in Lebanon until Iranian and Hezbollah forces stopped fighting alongside government forces in Syria, and the Sunni group's prisoners were released in Lebanon. Investigators later identified the two suicide bombers as a Lebanese man with ties to hardline Sunni groups and a Palestinian man with ties to the fugitive Sunni Islamist cleric, Sheikh Ahmed al-Assir, Mr Fayez was quoted to have said "He was wanted by the Lebanese authorities and is currently being interrogated in secret."..............................