Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Fertile Crescent

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Fertile Crescent

Article excerpt

Lebanese TV Building Bombed

According to the June 16 Daily Star, a previously unknown group named Ansar Allah (Supporters of God) bombed Beirut's Future television building-owned by Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri-the previous day. Security guards said that two rockets were fired from a BMW parked across the street. The perpetrators were able to avoid the facility's surveillance cameras and thus escape undetected. Ansar Allah announced it would "not allow anyone, even if they are powerful and influential, to fire poison arrows at the heart of resistance."

In a display of unity, both opposition and loyalist political figures condemned the attack on Hariri's facility, claiming that it targeted press freedom and the country's security and peace. The Amal Movement issued a statement describing the attack as "cowardly," while the Phalange Party said Ansar Allah's aim was to undermine the country's stability. Future TV is the first Lebanese media provider to be attacked since the country's 1975-1990 civil war.

Allies of Missing Lebanese Unable To Meet Assad

A delegation of the Paris-based organization SOLIDA, comprising both relatives and supporters of Lebanese nationals believed to be detained in Syria, made its way across the Lebanese-Syrian border on June 9, the third such delegation this year. According to the next day's Daily Star, its members were prevented from having an official meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad, and SOLIDA issued a statement saying, "Dialogue has been discontinued."

Dr. Ghazi Aad, spokesperson for another support group called SOLIDE, said the group decided to "address the source [Syria] directly because of the indifference shown by Lebanese authorities" toward the estimated 172 missing Lebanese nationals. …

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