A file picture taken on July 3, 1986 shows Lebanese Georges Ibrahim Abdallah during his trial in Lyon, central eastern France. AFP PHOTO/ HO
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Hezbollah deputy chief Naim Qassem Tuesday condemned France's ongoing imprisonment of leftist militant Georges Ibrahim Abdallah.The remarks were the first by a ranking official in Hezbollah to demand the release of Abdallah, but the party in 2013 released a statement of support.Abdallah should have been freed in 1999 by virtue of France's penal code, but Paris has rejected nine appeals for his release.Hezbollah had maintained a low profile in supporting his release, with party official Ghaleb Abu Zeinab once explaining that the party did not want its support to be negatively exploited.
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