Lebanon arrests fugitive hardline Sunni Islamist leader Ahmad al-Assir.(AlArabia).This is how Ahmad al-Assir looks like now.via @ogero99 via @green_lemonnn #Lebanon. pic.twitter.com/btFDyLYQco— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
Lebanese authorities have detained a hardline Sunni Islamist leader wanted for militant activity, including attacks on the Lebanese army, a senior security official told Reuters on Saturday.
The Lebanese National News Agency reported that Ahmad al-Assir was detained at Beirut airport as he was trying to leave the country.
Security sources added that Assir was using a fake passport and was trying to fly to Egypt, according to Agence France-Presse.
The firebrand cleric had been on the run since June 2013, after he and his supporters engaged in a deadly two-day battle with the Lebanese army in the southern city of Sidon.
The army seized his headquarters after 48 hours of clashes that killed 18 soldiers, but Assir was able to escape with several of his followers.
He continued to issue audio statements while on the run, and various rumors circulated as to where in Lebanon he was hiding.
Below twitter report by EjmAlrai AL RAI Chief International Correspondent AlraiMediaGroup.
#JN Threaten to kill #لبنان Military Lebanese prisoners unless Ahmed al-assir is released in 8 hours according to account.— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
Lebanese sources saying: "Tip-off by a #Palestinian source in Ayn el-Helwe 2 d suretée generale about al-assir who left the camp disguised"+— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
"Ahmad Al-Assir left the camp dressed as a woman to change into a man before reaching the airport. He has done some plastic surgery".+— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
"Al-Assir was travelling under false psprt under Rami Abdel Rahman Taleb, an existing real person.Al-Assir modified his look 2meet d FT"+— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
Army intel was monitoring Ahmad al-Assir phone conversation since months. He will be transferred to the MOD today. #Lebanon.— Elijah J. Magnier (@EjmAlrai) August 15, 2015
#Lebanon | Notorious Islamist Ahmad Al-Asir has been arrested in #Beirut Airport after attempting to flee to #Egypt pic.twitter.com/pjGO01KV9v— Hassan Ridha (@sayed_ridha) August 15, 2015
Al-Asir's close associate Yusuf Al-Hanini was also reportedly arrested #Beirut #Lebanon pic.twitter.com/V1EfKjYGwd— Hassan Ridha (@sayed_ridha) August 15, 2015