Sheikh Maher Hammoud combs his beard in Sidon, Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
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The spy network also included Sayyed's Lebanese wife Salam Sh., and the mastermind of the operation Lebanese Hani M. The spy ring is believed to have been conducting preliminary operations aimed at assassinating Hammoud and former Sidon MP and head of the Popular Nasserite Organization Osama Saad.Hammoud said he had knowledge of the ring two weeks before news of arresting its members emerged.Lebanon's Al-Akhbar newspaper reported that as soon as Hani was arrested UNIFIL and in particular its legal teams were placed on high alert. They immediately called State Prosecutor Samir Hammoud and Military Prosecutor Saqr Saqr and provided them with an agreement signed with the Lebanese government in 1996 . The agreement stipulates that the Lebanese state may not apprehend a UNIFIL employee without first receiving approval from UNIFIL command. UNIFIL spokesperson Andrea Tenenti said the organization intends to fully cooperate with Lebanese authorities on this subject and stressed that the cooperation would be transparent.
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