Lebanese soldiers take positions at an army post in the hills above the Lebanese town of Arsal, near the border with Syria, Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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The level of support shown at the Rome II conference Thursday illustrated again that Lebanon's security remains the red line for the international community but also underscored the work the government must do to obtain major additional assistance.Statements were made and meetings were held for almost three hours, after which the Lebanese Army and Internal Security Forces presented their five-year plans to those interested in helping.After last year's "Fajr al-Joroud" military operation by the Army to push Daesh (ISIS) militants from the northeast borderlands, reports of cooperation between the Army and Hezbollah – although denied strongly by the Army – did not go down well with some in the international community, especially those major supporters of the Army that see Hezbollah as a terrorist group.This could have prompted Rome II's pivot to also support the ISF, General Security and State Security – coupled with the more stable situation along Lebanon's Syrian-facing perimeter – to consolidate the gains made in domestic security.
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