BEIRUT: Israel and Islamist militants are seeking to ignite civil war in Lebanon, General Security head Abbas Ibrahim wrote in an editorial published Thursday.
"Independence Day arrives while Lebanon battles the odds ... in an ordeal not destined to end until [Lebanon’s] inevitable victory in the battle for existence and identity in the face of organized terrorism, which is seeking to ... strike at its elements of existence through inciting [sectarian] strife and setting the stage for a civil war by targeting the military institution and other security agencies,” Ibrahim said in the article for the November issue of General Security Magazine.
“Zionism is equally as dangerous [a threat] as takfiri terrorism,” he said.
Without naming them, Ibrahim said takfiri groups – clearly indicating ISIS and the Nusra Front – in addition to Israel have similar objectives, while each party “is trying to strengthen its status.”
“It is no secret to anyone that their [Israelis and takfiris] relationship is overt and implicit.”
He reiterated that Israel and “takfiri” terrorism still posed the most dangerous threat to Lebanon, adding that confronting them was possible if Lebanon freed itself from the “agendas that make some people depend on them directly or indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally."
Lebanon has been on the offensive against militants since ISIS and Nusra Front jihadists briefly overran the northeastern border town of Arsal in August. As they retreated, the militants took more than 30 Lebanese soldiers and policemen hostage.
They are still holding most of the servicemen near the Lebanon-Syria border after having released seven and killed three.
The Lebanese Army also cracked down on Islamist militants in and around the northern city of Tripoli last month.
The Army has arrested more than 300 militants across Lebanon in recent weeks.