BEIRUT: Arrest warrants were issued Monday for two suspects over the recent deadly car bombs in the northern city of Tripoli, as three people were charged for endangering national security by launching rockets into Israel, judicial sources told The Daily Star.
Two arrest warrants were issued by Military Investigative Judge Riad Abu Ghayda for Sheikh Ahmad Gharib and informant Mustafa Houri for the Tripoli attacks, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Ghayda also ordered the release of Sheikh Hashem Minqara on bail. However, Military Prosecutor Saqr Saqr challenged the latter decision and requested that Minqara remain in detention. Minqara will remain detained until the Court of Cassation issues its decision in his case.
The three suspects, as well as two Syrians who are still at large, were charged last week with the twin car blasts outside the two mosques in Tripoli which killed 47 people and wounded hundreds.
The Syrian suspects were identified as Capt. Mohammad Ali Ali, a Syrian intelligence officer, and Khodr Lutfi al-Airouni.
Gharib and Houri were charged with tasking the two Syrians to set up a “monitoring and planning cell to carry out terrorist acts in Lebanon” while the two Syrians were charged with rigging two cars with explosives and placing them, with the help of other individuals, outside Al-Taqwa and Al-Salam Mosques in Tripoli.
Minqara, the head of a pro-Assad Islamist group in Lebanon, was charged with withholding information about the cell’s terrorist activities.
Separately, Saqr charged three people with endangering national security by launching rockets into Israel.
The charges were filed against Youssef Mohammad Fliti and Omar Abdel-Mawla al-Atrash, who confessed to providing the four rockets that were used in the Aug. 22 rocket attack from south Lebanon into Israel.
Charges were also filed against a third person, who was not identified and remains at large.
In a statement, the Army said Fliti and Atrash had confessed to delivering four Katyusha rockets to a man in Tyre after transporting them from the village of Gaza in the Bekaa Valley.
The rockets targeting Israel from Tyre were met with swift retaliation from the Israeli air force, which on Aug. 23 fired a missile at a base belonging to a Palestinian faction.