BEIRUT

Lebanon News

Al-Qaeda-linked suspect dies in military chase

File photo shows Lebanese Army soldiers manning a checkpoint in the Bekaa Valley. (REUTERS/Rami Bleibel)

BEIRUT: A man said to be a member of the Al-Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades was killed during a military chase in east Lebanon, the Army said Thursday.

Ibrahim Abdul-Moti Abu Muaileq, a Palestinian known as Abu Jaafar, died Wednesday of wounds he sustained during a shootout with the military at an Army checkpoint in the Bekaa.

The statement said the Army, who has recently been on a manhunt for members of Abdullah Azzam Brigades, erected a temporary checkpoint in the area to detain the wanted man.

Abu Muaileq failed to stop at the checkpoint and opened fire at soldiers, wounding an officer, the statement said.

The Army fired back and wounded Abu Muaileq who later died from his wounds in a local hospital while a second man who accompanied the suspect was able to escape, the Army said.

Abu Muaileq was also linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), a radical Syrian rebel group which claimed responsibility for a suicide attack in Beirut’s southern suburbs on Jan. 2.

The group said the bombing was in retaliation to Hezbollah’s military involvement in Syria.

Abu Muaileq coordinated with the emir (head) of ISIS to transport suicide bombers from Syria’s Qalamoun into Lebanon and carry out terrorist attacks, the Army said.

The suspect’s car was confiscated and an identity card in the name of Ahmad Omar Solh was found in the vehicle.

Lebanon has been subject to several car bombings targeting residential and commercial areas in the country, mainly pro-Hezbollah neighborhoods.

The Abdullah Azzam Brigades has claimed responsibility for a twin suicide attack against the Iranian Embassy in Beirut last year. The head of the Al-Qaeda offshoot was arrested in December but later died of natural causes at a military hospital.

 

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